Standards are the foundation for accreditation of companies.

According to Danish Standards Foundation, the officiel definition of a standards:

  • Document for joint and repeated use, which provide rules, regulations or characteristic features of activities or with the results of these.
  • The document is created by consensus and by an acknowledged organ.
  • The objective is to reach optimal order in a given context.

A standard can be produced by the national standardisation organ - in Denmark Danish Standards Foundation.

The standard can also be produced in the international unions of standardisation organs: In Europe CEN, globally ISO.


  • DS is term used for Danish approved standards
  • EN is the term used for European approved standards
  • ISO or IEC are the terms used for international standards

Example: DS/EN ISO/IEC is an international (ISO/IEC) and European (EN) standard, which is approved in Denmark by DS.


When accrediting, standards are used on three levels.

  1. The accreditation organ, DANAK, for example, has to live up to the standard ISO/IEC 17011
  2. The standards, which the accredited companies have to live up to are accreditation standards
  3. Standards, or other documents, are also used when the accredited laboratories, inspection- and certification organs assesses products or companies. These can be found in the section ‘Accreditation Services’ on DANAK’s website


These following standards are used for different purposes:

  • ISO/IEC 17025: for laboratories that perform calibration and/or testing
  • ISO/IEC 15189: for laboratories that perform medical examinations
  • ISO 17034: for companies that produce reference materials
  • ISO/IEC 17043: for companies that provides proficiency testing
  • ISO 20387: for companies that perform biobanking
  • ISO/IEC 17021: for certification bodies that certifies management systems
  • ISO/IEC 17024: for certification bodies that certifies persons
  • ISO/IEC 17065: for certification bodies that certifies products
  • ISO/IEC 17020: for inspection bodies
  • ISO/IEC 17029: for validation and verification bodies