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Downlod IEC Standards - International Standardization (By IEC)

Many studies and surveys have clearly demonstrated the economic benefits of standardization. A series of studies conducted in Australia, Canada, France, Germany and the UK, point to a direct relationship between the use of standards and economic growth, labour productivity, ability to export, and more.

International Standards have a positive influence on innovation, much as patents do, but the efficient dissemination of new technical knowledge via standards is a decisive factor and a precondition for economic growth.

The very existence of standards is positive for trade. International Standards have a positive influence particularly on exports. International standards promote intra-industry trade and lead to improved international competitiveness.

International Standards encourage technology transfer from technology leaders to developing nations.

Reduce costs

Standards let you save up to 4.5 % in production costs. They help you better manage the quality of products and services throughout the world and improve design, engineering, production, installation and certification.

You want to sell your products beyond your home market and you really don’t want to invest time and money in researching which country needs what variations. Actually, you would prefer it if you could build your products in a way that would eliminate variations altogether.

There is an ongoing drive to harmonize standards globally. Standardized products are more easily adopted by both existing and new markets. This results in more rapid market development and, soon, higher sales.

While it may not always be possible to eliminate all variations, standards can help you identify commonalities and alert you to national differences.

Standardize testing

When your products are built to IEC International Standards, you have an additional advantage: you can use IEC CA (Conformity Assessment) Systems to accelerate market access in many countries. IEC CA Systems greatly simplify the global certification process by reducing the number of steps required to obtain certification at the national level. This reduces trade barriers caused by different national certification criteria, because IEC CA Systems provide a standardized approach to testing and certification.

All members of IEC CA Systems mutually accept certificates issued by another member of the System.

One test, one factory inspection, one certification open the doors to all member countries of a System.

Make the world your home

International trade in electrotechnical products and services has never been greater, and globalisation and increased competition is a fact of business life. With IEC International Standards as a common reference tool, you manage the quality of your products and cut down barriers to trade.

Standards provide a sense of clarity in an ever more complex world. Many countries around the world have adopted IEC International Standards as their national standards.

Offering standardized products brings you global market acceptance. Companies need specifications, data and internationally agreed-upon measurement methods to develop and market products that work with each other safely and efficiently in as many countries as possible.

The IEC, together with ISO (International Organization for Standardization) and ITU (International Telecommunication Union), has built a strategic partnership with the WTO (World Trade Organization). WTO deals with the global rules of trade between nations. Its main function is to ensure that trade flows as smoothly, predictably and freely as possible.

The Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) aims to reduce obstacles to trade resulting from differences between national regulations and standards.

No need to cut corners

You spend a great deal of money and time to bring a new product to the market. Sometimes millions are invested in capital, equipment, human resources and manufacturing.

With investments of that magnitude, you want to avoid all the mistakes that others have made before you and take into account all the market requirements, long before you actually start to sell.

Standards not only help you to get your products faster to the market, but they also help you extend the life-span of products, making your investment last longer. Successful design principles can easily be reused, creating products that age more slowly.


Each IEC International Standard is the synthesis of hundreds of discussions among industry experts and provides you with a trustworthy platform on which you can build your innovations. Globally accepted, neutral reference points eliminate interpretation and grey areas.


Standards offer you a built-in level of safety, reliability and performance and cover the environment, chemical and waste management. You really don’t have to cut corners to be competitive.

Quality assured products at competitive prices

When you use standard-based products, you improve the cost-efficiency of your supply chain and reduce overhead costs. Because standardized products are easier to come by, you needn’t stock them. On the other hand, if you manufacture standardized products, your market will be bigger.

After-sales service and maintenance for standardized products is cheaper, faster and simpler. You can save money which you can invest better elsewhere.

IEC International Standards and Conformity Assessment Systems ensure that you have the same competitive advantage as the other players in a given market. They also help you buy and sell products that come with a guaranteed level of quality and safety.

Build reach

Product adoption the easy way

Nothing slows down markets more from growing than disparate standards. Standardized products are simply more convincing and they are also easier to sell. They are more easily adopted by more customers and this in turn results sooner in faster market development and higher sales.

Complying with electrotechnical standards puts your products ahead of non-conforming products. Good. Now you can expand your product offer and start the cycle again, increasing your business in the process.

Customers find it easier to buy products that are based on agreed standards. Even in fast evolving high-tech markets, consumers like to know that what they buy is not going to be obsolete tomorrow.

Customers also want products that behave as expected, plug in directly and don’t need adaptors. Ease-of-use is the key.

For more expensive products they also want after-sales service and maintenance, which implies standardized replacement parts.

Brands and retailers can give consumers a certain level of reassurance about the quality and reliability of their products. In turn they themselves rely on products that fulfil basic quality criteria to protect their own reputation and business.

When businesses invest in devices and systems, they usually want them to work safely and efficiently with previously purchased and installed devices and systems. Interoperability but also maintenance are a must and standards are the key.

Easily plug into existing technology

Tap into market opportunities, even if you are late in entering a market.

Compete on an equal footing with those who are leading.

Standards allow you to plug into existing technologies and assist you in developing and marketing products that are compatible with previously installed devices and systems.

No matter how large or small your company is, you don’t have to reinvent the wheel to take advantage of the business opportunities that are out there.

If yours is a start-up, you should know that you can shorten your preliminary R&D phase drastically if you apply standardized development processes centred on standardized products. In that way you build on existing know-how which is both cheaper and faster and gets you a bit closer to where you need to be.

Standards take the burden of proof off your shoulders because they offer built-in safety and performance assurance. By using IEC International Standards, you demonstrate that you meet those requirements. By being involved in IEC standardization work, you help set those requirements.

Good regulatory practice

Law-makers incorporate references to IEC International Standards in legal documents. Since IEC International Standards are regularly reviewed, they remain up-to-date and that in turn allows laws to remain current.

Regulators in many countries directly recognize certificates and test reports issued by the IEC Conformity Assessment Systems as proof of compliance to regulatory requirements. This then greatly facilitates market access for manufacturers.

Improve quality

Standard-based products start with components that offer a built-in measure of reliability and safety. The whole idea behind using standards is to facilitate quality control and to be able to reproduce the same result time and time again.

Standards also offer you an objective reference for product and performance benchmarks. With them you have access to a set of globally accepted neutral reference points that largely eliminate interpretation and grey areas. Whether your engineers sit in Europe, China or the US, they will all understand the language of IEC International Standards.

IEC International Standards facilitate third-party auditing as well as in-house quality control and that provides you with a competitive advantage over non-standardized products.

Time is money – use it better

Standard-based products simplify problem handling and trouble shooting.

IEC International Standards offer a handy set of reference data that allows you to spend less time searching for the problem and its solution. That way you are able to provide a more efficient customer service and deal with the problem faster at lower cost to your company. Your customers will love it.

Standardized products also allow you to show greater respect for a basic customer need: ease of use.

Incompatibility is a major hurdle for customer adoption. Products that interconnect, even across brands, can help you expand your market and satisfy consumer convenience.

Take the easy way

Electrotechnical standards create transparency both in the marketplace and in your company:

  • They help you simplify the design process and manufacturing
  • They enable you to streamline your procurement process and reduce your warehousing costs
  • They facilitate quality control both in-house and by third parties
  • No need to reinvent the wheel, just add something new to that wheel.


Simplify processes

Standardize business processes
Streamline and simplify sourcing, production, warehousing, quality control, maintenance and after-sales service
Reduce your overhead costs - standard-based materials and products are easier to store, transport and handle

Standardized processes are also good for your reputation. A company that is driven by standard-based processes is not only more efficient and generally more profitable, it is also a more attractive business partner.

More international companies now insist that their suppliers provide standardized products built with standardized processes.

Accelerate innovation

"Standards hamper innovation, they bring things down to the lowest common denominator…" You certainly have heard comments like that before.

Actually, the contrary is true. Electrotechnical standards allow you to start from a higher level platform.

Safety and environmental concerns have already been addressed, and interoperability is ensured.

Standards are the sum of many voices. They incorporate the common knowledge and know-how of many of the best experts in your industry.

Standards give you a platform that helps you save money and time on the obvious so that you can invest in real innovation.

Standards keep R&D faster and more focused and are the basis for applied creativity. They help you direct your internal efforts to those solutions that will work in the market place.

Where you take it from there is up to you. The opportunities to differentiate are literally unlimited.

IEC International Standards provide you with a platform from which your innovations can soar higher. They offer globally accepted set of rules and you have access to and benefit from the learning curve of others.

Cut down on trial and error and start your innovation process from a shared body of knowledge. Mitigate your risks at every stage. There is really no need to start from scratch.

Standards allow your products to connect with existing products and that leads to increased customer convenience.

Standard-based products are designed, manufactured and marketed at lower cost. This reduces your risks and inspires confidence.

Standards also offer a globally accepted set of terms and definitions, leaving very little room for misunderstanding. This facilitates cooperation and enables two-way technology transfer.

Standardization allows for the reuse of successful design principles and that helps you to create products that age more slowly and cost less.

IEC International Standards incorporate environmental considerations, including specifications, to make dismantling and recycling easier and more cost-efficient. They provide objective, relevant and realistic performance indicators that help you make your green commitments measurable and doable.

IEC International Standards serve as a reference for fixing environmental targets that are locally applicable but will also have global relevance and impact.

Standardized processes together with IEC International Standards and Conformity Assessments likewise allow you to reduce your energy consumption and produce more energy-efficient products.

Source: (IEC - International Electrotechnical Commission)