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Why Are Accreditations So Important?

Published: 26th April 2022

At Sheffield Assay Office we have been providing testing services since 1773, and are proud of our independence and integrity, giving our customers 100% confidence. Over the years this has become a fundamental part of our philosophy, and we have gained, and continue to be accredited with some of the world’s largest organisations. 

Certain accreditations verify that an organization not only does quality work, but also has sound financial, administrative, operational, and oversight practices.

Accreditation pushes institutions to meet and maintain their high standards, which in turn increases trust and confidence in them among the public, and boosts accountability. 

Here at Sheffield Assay Office, we are proud to hold the following accreditations:

  • ISO/IEC 17025:2017 accreditation (UKAS)
  • ISO 9001:2015 certification (BSI)
  • Code of Practices 2019 certification (Responsible Jewellery Council)

UKAS (United Kingdom Accreditation Service) laboratory accreditation uses criteria and procedures specifically to determine technical competence. The internationally recognised standard ISO/IEC 17025 is used to assess factors relevant to a laboratory’s ability to produce precise, accurate tests. We gained the accreditation in September 1982 and are one of the longest serving laboratories. 

Our Analytical Services department also operates our own policy of continuous improvement to ensure that we set the benchmark, investing each year in industry state-of-the-art equipment and professional development for technical personnel. Although this was first developed for the jewellery trade, we now work across a diverse range of businesses and industries.

BSI (British Standards Institution) is the international standard that specifies requirements for a quality management system. Organizations use the standard ISO 9001 to demonstrate the ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements. 

We have held this certification for over 25 years which we feel reflects our focus on quality and is an integral part of our continuous improvement culture. By embracing the principles of the standard, we have demonstrated our commitment to our customers, to our quality processes, and to exceed our stakeholder’s expectations. 

As our Quality Policy states: Get it right, first time, every time, and strive for continual improvement.

The Responsible Jewellery Council is our latest accreditation and applies specifically to our industry. The RJC are the world’s leading standard setting organisation for the jewellery and watch industry. They promote standards that underpin people’s trust in the worldwide jewellery and watch supply chain. We became members in July 2018 and are the only UK Assay Office to hold this accreditation. 

This accreditation and Code of Practices includes Legal Compliance, Financial Accounts, Non-discrimination, Employment Terms, Community Development, Health & Safety and Environmental as well as Human Rights and the Supply Chain.

We feel that by working towards all these elements across our organisation, this creates confidence and inspires trust in all the products and services that the public has come to rely upon from Sheffield Assay Office. For further details of any of the services that we offer, please go to

The Sheffield Assay Office was established in 1773, under an Act of Parliament and today the company assays and hallmarks the precious metals - silver, gold, platinum and palladium. Sheffield Assay Office is one of only four UK assay offices who all work to uphold the Hallmarking Act of 1973 and continue to ensure consumer protection for customers purchasing precious metals.

To find out more about the whole range of services offered by Sheffield Assay Office, such as our hallmarking and analytical services, please email us at or complete the contact form on our website at,

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