PBSA General Accreditation

By Derek Hinton, CEO, CRAzoom

PBSA has introduced General Accreditation. This is a “global” accreditation, not just the U.S. The cost of this General Accreditation is $6450.

However, if you do it at the same time as the U.S. accreditation, it’s $1000. (Initial or 5-year renewal) And, it’s about 85% the same or similar to the U.S. accreditation standard.

If you are an organization that delivers services outside of the U.S., to any degree, getting General Accreditation is probably a no-brainer. The General Accreditation will most likely follow the track of U.S. accreditation.

  • Early adopters (accredited companies) will have a sales and marketing edge—but accreditation is new and while improving your organization, it will not be demanded.
  • Potential clients will begin asking about Accreditation status when choosing between background providers. Later, Request for Proposals will feature the question of PBSA Accreditation. Along this curve, this question will go from “a leg up” if you are accredited to “if you are not accredited, you don’t make the first cut.”
  • Finally, current clients will begin asking for your accreditation status and if you are not an accredited firm, it’s a stigma and you are vulnerable to accredited companies with similar (or better) pricing, customer service, and technology.

So General Accreditation will probably follow the success of U.S. Accreditation and if you’re delivering services outside the U.S., I would reap the benefits of having an advantage before you are under the gun of being disadvantaged.

If you are a U.S. company and are unaccredited, you don’t have to be King Belshazzar to see the writing on the wall on whether you need PBSA accreditation to grow.

If you are a U.S. company that is currently accredited, what about General Accreditation? The cost of General Accreditation is the same as U.S Accreditation–$6450. That may not be appealing to you—depending on your client mix.

But, If you do the U.S. and General Accreditation at the same time, the cost of adding General Accreditation is just $1000 more and that fact coupled with having two certifications makes it appealing. As we’ve seen with initiatives like the GDPR, the protection of individual/consumer data as a governmental concern is increasing.

I think many of my U.S. clients will be getting both—but only when their U.S. accreditation comes up for a 5-year renewal.

If you are interested in PBSA’s General Accreditation, the PBSA website says applications are currently being accepted for any organization that wishes to be announced or accredited with the Beta Testing Group. Applications for Group 1 are being accepted through February 28, 2023.

If your U.S. Accreditation 5-year renewal is coming up in the next couple of years, you might consider the chance to be a “globally” accredited firm with a small incremental cost. Like the U.S. Accreditation, I have a program to help you accomplish this goal.

Derek Hinton is President of CRAzoom, a company used by the majority of CRAs to achieve and maintain PBSA Accreditation. In addition, Derek consults as a fractional Compliance Officer for CRAs, has created “plug and play” packages for CRAs being audited by their vendors, and is the owner and creator of CrimApollo, a criminal record assessment tool for employers and CRAs. Derek is also the managing partner of NameGrades, a program that assesses the commonality of names in the United States.

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