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Towards a global cyber institute – Part 2.
By Allan J. Sayle, President Allan Sayle Associates

Registration schemes and registrars

Neither the accreditation bodies nor auditor registration schemes offer anything a cyber-based Institute could not. Indeed, the latter could do more.

Diligent registrars ought to salivate at the prospects of the new Institute becoming also the international accreditation body. Auditors and training course providers ought to do likewise. Registrars want to reach as many actual and potential customers as possible. They spend vast sums of money advertising their services in monthly house magazines. The new Institute can offer hyperlinks at a fraction of the cost. The Registrars could become Corporate Members, as described above. Being businesses they naturally want to go where their customers are: they want exposure. There is no sound reason why they should feel any nostalgic loyalty to the BAMs. Rather, to the BAMs HQs and secretariats for they are not their customers, merely middlemen and intermediaries extracting their price (mark-up) for providing an advertisement placement service for house magazines to attract the real customers.

Is an advertisement in a house magazine read? Maybe. But a click on a hyperlink records actual interest and impact.

The diligent registrars also know they are frustrated by some who do not maintain high standards of performance, if one might politely describe the problem. They would probably welcome Institute members being able to post their experiences of registrars for it would soon sort out the wheat from the chaff. There would be an incentive to maintain high standards of performance for that is conducive to growing their business.

Members’ experiences of registrars

And, the cyber-based Institute could easily set up a secure site in which members could post their real views and experiences of registrar performance, perhaps naming names. The Institute could also list approved firms, details of CARs issued, names of certified auditors. It is all being done using IT anyway, so the Institute could soon provide such a facility.

Members setting the rules for accreditation and registration by the Institute

If the members determine the rules they want, they can mandate accreditation by the Institute if the registrar wants their employer or client’s business. At present, the RABQSA and IRCA enjoy that franchise by default since it predates the present day internet capability. As the Institute gets under way, individual members can specify that requirement thereby guaranteeing it will be supported. (What is new in that? It was the members of the BAMs that promoted and endorsed the RAB, IRCA and others. In any case, competition is healthy and a new cyber-based scheme would be good for that.) Since it would be based on international consensus, there can be little fear of the scheme being hijacked or used as a cash cow by local interests. In the end, that should guarantee fees would also be reduced – an attractive proposition that would raise the value for money registrars, auditors and users receive.

Naturally, it would be especially helpful if a few prominent companies, such as Ford, GE or Merck would lend their support. But, as their own employee quality professionals advise their management, one might soon expect such endorsement to be forthcoming, provided those people join the Institute. It would be somewhat strange, though, for any prominent company that claims to be global or international in outlook and operation not to support a global institute once it is aware of its existence. And, through the immediacy and reach of the internet, members can always post the fact that such a company is not interested. Members are also customers of company products.

For nearly twenty years there has been considerable dissatisfaction with the actual or perceived level of service provided by registrars and the accreditation schemes. One can reasonably extrapolate the unrest to assert the existing committees and rules for governance are unsatisfactory. In setting up a new global cyber Institute, the opportunity for resolving the causes for that dissatisfaction are patent.

The Institute can determine its own eminent, experienced people charged and entrusted with the effective operation of such schemes. They would be immediately available for comment and counsel. Comments, suggestions and irritations could be publicly posted and dealt with. And, registrars could be publicly admitted to the register – miscreants publicly “struck-off”.

Perhaps best of all, since the members would be more directly involved in the accreditation/ registration process, they would get an opportunity to set up a scheme that addresses the causes of so many complaints about registrar effectiveness and service over the years. Their feeling of being personally remote from the process, as if an unheard voice, can be alleviated. If the scheme reduces the present disaffection and “noise” surrounding company registration, registrar performance and roles, it will make a substantial contribution to the quality profession and its service to business.

Next: Developing international standards




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