Who uses standards?

Governments, charities, small businesses, the biggest businesses on the planet – every organization that cares about doing things well uses standards.

How can standards help small businesses?

If you’re a small business, you already know that you have to work harder to prove yourself against larger organizations. That’s where our standards come in. Whether you want to monitor and improve product quality, harden up your IT system security, implement a complaints management system, vet potential employees or give customers extra peace of mind, using our standards can help.

Implementing standards inspires confidence in your business and sets you apart from the competition. And, crucially for your bottom line, it can drive down costs, boost productivity and improve profits.

It can also help retain existing customers and open doors to new markets. Indeed, some contracts and supply chains are only open to standards-compliant businesses. This is why adopting BSI standards can be a big step-up that allows you to compete with larger organizations.

Standards can:

  • Help you allocate resources more efficiently.
  • Get your product to market quicker.
  • Reduce your risks from IT failure.
  • Help you compete effectively with larger organizations.

National and multinational businesses

We work with a wide range of large UK and international businesses – names such as Vodafone, Pwc, First Great Western, Samsung, Mercedes, Network Rail and many more.

Most businesses that operate on a national or international scale understand the need to adopt standards to boost growth, reduce waste, protect against risk and be more sustainable.

When leading businesses use standards, they save themselves the time and effort of reinventing the wheel. They gain the finest knowledge from the world’s leading experts. That means they don’t need to waste their efforts in the wrong place.

Meanwhile they are freed to concentrate their efforts on what they do best – making brilliant new products, generating powerful creative ideas, delivering great service.

For businesses that operate globally, applying international standards is one of the best ways to demonstrate quality, compatibility and consistency, and helps create a common language upon which to trade.

Standards are particularly important for businesses that are in the public eye, where reputation can suffer catastrophic damage as a result of an environmental issue or a problem that harms customers.

We also ask individual large businesses and trade associations to get involved in producing standards. They help us create standards that take full account of technical and commercial needs, cut red tape and reduce barriers to trade. This is how we can be sure that standards actually help businesses rather than holding them back.

Standards offer the knowledge organizations need to succeed in the face of intense competition. 

The role standards in government

Using standards benefits government organizations in many ways, from streamlining their own processes to helping build alternative approaches to regulation.

Government is keen to reduce red tape for both the private and public sectors. A key way to do this is to have regulators and their inspectors concentrate their efforts on those organizations who present the highest risk – rather than putting the burden on everyone, as has often been the case in the past.

This is where standards come in. Not to replace regulations, but to complement them. Standards are shaped by best practice, so if an organization is using them, it’s probably being well managed. This makes it easier for regulators to decide where to focus their attention. Standards are the foundation on which a risk-based approach to regulation can be built.

We work closely with the UK government in many areas. Its representatives participate in our technical committees along with those from business, academia and consumer groups. Together, we make sure that products, processes, new technologies and services incorporate the knowledge and needs of all interested parties.

Using our standards also helps the government’s own processes become more efficient, for example eliminating waste and achieving maximum value for money in its procurement processes. 

Finally, standards help government departments encourage the growth of groundbreaking new products and industries – by providing dependable knowledge and standardization so that new technologies can work seamlessly with existing technologies.