QB: the certification mark serving quality in the construction industry
In order to simplify the current certification scene in the construction sector and maximize the legibility of benchmarks for the quality, performance and reliability of products, services and stakeholders, the CSTB launched QB - Quality in Building at the end of 2015. This new certification mark will gradually replace the following marks: CSTBat, CSTBat Service, Certifié CSTB Certified, CSTB Compétence and UPEC CSTB.
An intense communication campaign via print and digital media will help accelerate the deployment of the QB mark.
The certification of products and services is a decisive factor of trust for the stakeholders of the construction industry. The CSTB independently carries out third-party assessments, considered as a reliable, recognized proof of performance.
A voluntary procedure, certification by the CSTB provides high added-value. It highlights the performance, in terms of quality, safety, durability and more, of construction products with regard to a set of requirements laid down in certification reference systems. The latter include the technical specifications to comply with, as well as monitoring.
The certification reference systems are developed in consensus with all of the stakeholders, such as manufacturers, users, public authorities, consumers, and more.
The certification of products and services is recognized:
- by the market, both by professional specifiers and by individual consumers, who are looking for an independent technical benchmark;
by industrial companies and professionals who are certified, and appreciate:
- having a technical benchmark for fair competition,
- the recognition that comes with assessments carried out by the CSTB.
The certification mark logos are featured on the product, on each packaging unit and on the technical manuals.
Technical information is also provided to educate the user.
The certification body issues a certificate to the manufacturer granting the right to use the mark. The certificate indicates the list of products and characteristics that are certified.
For each certification field of application, the CSTB posts on its website an official list or a database of all of the holders.
The certification of products and services is governed in France by the Consumer Code. This regulation requires certification bodies to be accredited by the COFRAC. This accreditation aims to demonstrate their impartiality and authority.
* The manufacturer bears sole responsibility for the quality of the products and services it supplies to its customers. The CSTB conducts assessments based on regular audits, generally accompanied by sampling and tests carried out in its laboratories. The aim is to substantiate that the manufacturer has the appropriate means and methods to achieve the declared performance levels with sufficient probability.
The certification procedure
The certified characteristics are assessed with impartiality and independence with the following means of control:
Performance of an on-site audit by a qualified auditor:
Performance of tests by an ISO 17 025 accredited laboratory or assessed as compliant with ISO 17 025 by the CSTB
(*) Periodic audit frequency defined in the relevant certification reference system
(**) Performance of tests in accordance with the provisions stipulated in the relevant reference system