Client Resources

Safety Certification Process

Congratulations on your decision to use MET Laboratories for your third-party product safety testing and/or certification needs. It is our intention to exceed your expectations and to bring your project to a successful conclusion in the most expedient and beneficial manner possible. The following information is intended to facilitate that end; and, to familiarize you with our processes.

In preparation for the commencement of your project we ask that you review: the information below; the “What is needed before the scheduled start date” or the “What is needed for the electrical safety evaluation” portions of your quote; and, the Product Submittal Checklist.

Getting Started

Once your project has been scheduled your assigned Project Engineer will review the RFQ, the quote, and any additional documentation that was supplied at the time of the quote and will contact you, if practicable, 1 – 2 days before the project start date to: introduce themselves; reaffirm the project start date; ask questions concerning your product and it’s operation; answer any preliminary questions you may have; and, to discuss the equipment as received (if any) and additional equipment or documentation required to begin the project and to keep it on schedule.

If your equipment has been received, before the time of this call, your Project Engineer may bring to your attention any obvious non-conformities or irregularities that may exist in the design, intended operation, or loading of the equipment. In most cases, your prompt attention, and/or mitigating responses, will be necessary to maintain the project schedule.

Our Communications Policy and Your Responses

Throughout the compliance investigation your Project Engineer will periodically reach out to you for additional information or documentation regarding your equipment. We ask that your responses to these requests, as well as any questions that might arise though the course of the compliance investigation, be sent through your assigned Project Coordinator. To assure timely completion of your project it is necessary that we receive a prompt response to these requests.

The Project Engineer will update our online, proprietary, project tracking software, METrak, periodically so that, at any time, you can check the status of your project. These updates are normally limited to a statement that “this project remains in progress and on schedule”; however, at times we may include statements which indicate the possibility of an adversely impacted schedule, such as “this project remains open but progress is being hampered due to the lack of{some outstanding issue or document}. In extreme cases, it may become necessary to place your project on hold; this action is normally reserved for occasions when our persistent effort would result in a need for significant reinvestigation (and/or retesting); damage to your equipment; and/or, additional cost to you. Project holds are usually (but not always) discussed, and mutually agreed upon, by the Project Engineer; their manager; and, the customer prior to implementation.

Your Project Coordinator will provide you with METrak access and will also send you a weekly update to ensure you are being kept up to date on our progress.

Compliance Investigation

The compliance Investigation typically begins with a constructional review of your product against the applicable product safety standards. The constructional review is generally non-destructive. Typical issues covered include, but are not limited to: warnings/markings, electrical ratings, openings in the enclosure, isolation to hazardous parts (mechanical & electrical), suitability of components and materials and flammability ratings of polymeric materials. Following a complete review of the standard, the product is moved into the testing phase. Typical testing includes, but is not limited to: current/power measurement, temperature testing, abnormal operations (component faults, reduced ventilation and the like), dielectric strength (Hi-Pot) testing, and mechanical strength and stability testing. If there are unresolved non-compliances, a findings report is issued.

Your Assistance is Requested

Depending upon the scope of your project you may receive communications from our Product Safety administrative team concerning the completion of two contracts: the Applicant Contract; and, the Manufacturers contract. If you receive these contracts we ask that you complete and return them to the sender as soon as possible in order to maintain the project flow.

The Applicant contract includes a section wherein, if applicable, you will be asked to choose your preferred method of applying the MET mark: Direct Imprinting or purchasing labels from MET. If you opt for Direct Imprinting (as most do) we request that you provide label graphics in advance so that our engineers and administrative personnel can review and approve the content and MET graphic prior to the project due date.

We are sure you’ll agree that the end of a project is not the time to start soliciting signatures from management or designing labels.

Findings Report

The Findings Report summarizes all evaluation and testing that has been conducted on your product. Any questions, requests for information or non-compliances are provided to you in a clear and concise format with a summary of the clause requirement, the conditions noted, and the required response to resolve the issue.

Depending upon the extent of the non-conformities reported in the Findings Report you may be asked to sign and return a Project Change Authorization (PCA) to cover the additional effort necessary to evaluate your proposed mitigations to the findings, edit the engineering evaluation, retest as necessary, and/or edit the reports.

It is important to note that answers to questions and responses to mitigations may lead to additional findings which could result in the issuance of additional Findings Reports.

Onward Toward Completion

Upon successful mitigation of all non-conformities and completion of the required contracts; and, depending upon the scope of your project, you will receive either a Compliance Letter or an Approval Letter.

A Compliance Letter states that your equipment is compliant to the applicable standard(s); however, we are unable to release your product for sale with the MET NRTL mark applied at this time. OSHA requires that we inspect the manufacturing facility’s quality system and assess the repeatability and continued compliance of the production of Approved equipment. The issuance of the Compliance Letter triggers MET’s internal departments to schedule what is called a Pre-Certification Factory Inspection (or PCFI). Once triggered the Safety Field team, usually through your Project Coordinator, will schedule a mutually agreed upon date and time to conduct the PCFI. Upon successful completion of the PCFI an Approval Letter is issued.

An Approval Letter states that your product is found compliant to the applicable standard; and, if the scope of your project includes the application of the MET NRTL mark you are free to begin marketing your products with the MET NRTL approval mark. If the scope of your project does not include application of a MET mark receipt of an Approval Letter signifies the successful completion of the evaluation. In either case the receipt of an Approval Letter also signifies that the Final Reports are forthcoming.

Final Report

The final certification reports are continually being worked on throughout the certification process. Depending on the markets that you are pursuing, you will receive one or more certification reports at the conclusion of the project. For US and Canadian certifications the final reports are used by MET’s Factory Inspectors to verify continuing compliance of your product during their ongoing factory inspections. For International markets, you can use the reports to support your Self Declaration of compliance (European Union), or for submittal to a National Certification Body for approval under the CB Scheme.

How long will the process take?

Duration is dependent on the product category, and the overall readiness of the submittal. In many cases the process can be expedited if a shorter completion time is desired. Please note that non-compliance findings, test failures, or other unexpected delays beyond our control may jeopardize the completion date. To minimize delays, be sure to submit all information of the Product Submittal Checklist. Contact your Account Manager or Project Coordinator for more details on completion times, and expedited scheduling.

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