Saturday, December 3, 2011

The ubiquitous 5 ticks

(Image: SAI logo & the '5 ticks' StandardsMark™)

These days you can't help but notice SAI Global's '5 ticks' StandardsMark™ everywhere: for instance try opening up a Law Society Journal on a Sydney bus and, voila, there they are in the editorial housekeeping section & window respectively!

They're all-seeing; they're omnipresent; & they're utilised by the following industries:

$$ Quality Industry

$$ Environment Industry

$$ Health & Safety Industry

$$ Food Safety Industry

$$ Market & Social Research Industry

$$ Information Security Industry

$$ Medical Device Industry

$$ Legal Best Practice Industry

The above programs represent just a small portion of SAI Global's scope - in fact the '5 ticks' StandardsMark™ has become our global atmosphere!

SAI Global & Standards Australia shared timeline
(information sourced from their detailed websites)

1. In 1922 the Australian Commonwealth Engineering Standards Association was founded and in 1929 changed its name to the Standards Association of Australia (SAA). The year 1988 saw a further name change for SAA to Standards Australia which now signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Federal Government to acknowledge government recognition of Standards Australia as the peak non-government standards development organisation.

2. In 1990 and 1991 Standards Australia established Quality Assurance Services Pty Ltd (QAS) to manage their rapidly expanding certification activities, and acquired the industrial Design Council of Australia and the Australian Design Awards, respectively.

3. By 1999, Standards Australia had changed its association status and had become incorporated as an Australian public company limited by guarantee, Standards Australia International Ltd (SAI Limited); and by 2001 SAI Limited’s subsidiary QAS had acquired KPMG’s certification businesses in Australia and New Zealand.

4. In 2002, not only did SAI Limited acquire part of the former Australian Quality Council (AQC) including the Australian Business Excellence Awards, but it re branded its certification business from QAS to SAI Global, finally listing on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX) on December 17 2003 under ASX code SAI.

5. Over the next eight years, SAI Global continued on a commercial trajectory of global acquisition and expansion, including the acquisition of the Anstat Group in Australia.

SAI Global today

6. According to their website today, SAI Global is a company which ‘provides organizations around the world with information services and solutions for managing risk, achieving compliance and driving business improvement’. In addition to auditing, certifying and registering products, systems or supply chains through ‘independent assessment to reduce risk and enhance service and product quality’, they ‘provide legal, compliance and risk management professionals with a broad range of technology enabled programs and consulting services that facilitate good governance and awareness of compliance, ethics and policy issues.’

7. Through their promoted ‘aggregated access services to Standards, Handbooks, legislative and property publications from hundreds of publishers’, they advertise their ability to ‘reference and manage critical business information’, as well as provision of the ‘training that business professionals around the world need to improve their individual performance and help their organizations succeed’.

8. According to their 2006 submission to the Productivity Commission, SAI Global is a leader in the use of web-based technologies for the production, distribution and licensing of intellectual property. Its Publishing Services division delivers national and international Standards, legislation, technical and regulatory up-date and news services. These products are delivered in hard copy and via on-line subscription and other web-based services. Through a publishing licensing agreement with Standards Australia, it holds the rights to distribute Australian Standards, and other Standards developed by international standardization bodies. SAI Global, through its subsidiary Anstat, also has the rights to publish Victorian Government legislation and the Australian New Zealand Food Standards Code.

SAI Limited today

9. SAI Limited’s website is conducted under the nomenclature “Standards Australia” and throughout its website ‘timeline’ makes references to itself as “Standards Australia.”

10. Standards Australia represents as an independent, not-for-profit organisation, recognised by the Australian Government as the peak non-government Standards body in Australia, and one that develops the internationally aligned Australian Standards that deliver net benefits to Australia.

11. Standards Australia is the Principal Sponsor of the Australian International Design Awards.

One & the same...& everywhere...& claustrophobic...& big money for some!


  1. One of the things that bothers me about helmets is the forced exposure to increased skin cancer risk.

    I know some people wear a cap under their helmet, and some cut up a hat and stick a brim on their helmet, but the general opinion seems to be that measures like that would not comply with the as/nzs 2063:2008 standard.

    That seems to be because the standard specifies only manufacturer approved modifications (mine is labeled 'no modification'). Also, adding something to the outside of the helmet might exceed the limit for projections from the helmet (bad luck for those people with helmet mounted mirrors.)

    Wearing a cap under the helmet might interfere with the mandated 'correctly fitted' part of the law. It might also introduce projections inside the helmet which are not allowed by the standard.

    So, I recently contacted the Cancer Council (I was looking for some part of government to contact but they seem to have delegated their responsibility to the Cancer Council) to ask their position on MHL and whether a helmet provides good protection from the sun or would they advise me to wear a broad brimmed hat.

    They replied that they have no policy on MHL, a helmet provides little protection, and they sell a helmet cover from their online store.

    It looks like a good product and I've ordered one. However, I wanted to ask them if it complied with the standard as regards adding modifications to the helmet but thought I should check the standard myself first.

    I went looking for a copy of the standard and finished up at SAI Global's online store. They want over $60 for a pdf copy. Some libraries are rumoured to have a copy. My local library checked council and state libraries. Not available in SA. I checked the Aust National Library. They have a subscription to SAI Global but it is only available from inside the library.

    It is a lousy deal for us,the public, when the government forces us to comply with a document prepared,and owned, by a private organisation which seems to have been granted a favour by the government, and the only way a member of the general public can see the document is to pay a large (in my opinion) amount of money to that private organisation.

  2. Hey Steve! - doesn't it suck!!!! I bought one for information purposes & you're more than welcome to read it - let me know

  3. Thanks Sue. I don't really need to see the whole thing, another reason why it's not worth $60 to me. Perhaps you could just confirm a couple of things for me so I can query the Cancer Council with facts behind me.

    Is it correct that the latest amendment has a limit on protrusions from the exterior of the helmet? I think I read somewhere (can't remember where) that a limit of about 20mm has been included. Clearly an unspoken acknowledgement of the (still denied) rotational brain injury problem.

    Is it correct that the only mention of user modifications is in the labelling requirements?

    I think the standard requires vents in the helmet sufficient for cooling. If so, just covering the vents might make it non compliant.

    I feel silly picking over little details like this but, since common sense is not part of the law or the standard, I am reduced to poking officialdom with whatever stick I can find.