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R2v3 - The Sustainable Electronics Reuse & Recycling (R2) Standard V3 Overview of the Cert. project

So, you think you need an R2v3 Certificate? In this blog post we will focus on the basic overview of getting R2v3 certification in place at your facility.

R2v3 Standard Overview

The R2v3 standard was written by Sustainable Electronic Recycling International, or SERI. They serve as the accreditation body and issue R2v3 a license to your facility once certification is complete. To become certified, your organization must be audited by a third-party registrar or certification body that is accredited to audit. Here is a link to a list of the currently accredited Certification bodies that are authorized to audit to the R2v3 and issue certification.


Sustainable Electronic Recycling International (SERI ) - R2v3 Scheme Owners (Standard Owner)


R2 Certification Body / Registrar (Performs third party audits) - American National Accreditation Board (ANAB) Accredited Certification Body


Your facility

Certification Process

We will assume that you are looking for the quickest way to get the certification in place. If you are currently running your electronic recycling business and have established business processes in place the quickest timeframe for certification will be about two to three months at minimum. This will largely depend on the availability of R2v3 auditors. But, lets break down the certification process into three basic steps utilizing an R2v3 consultant for the project.

Step one – Selecting a consultant and establishing your documented R2v3 Environmental, Health and Safety Management System.

The first step in this process, if using a consultant would be to select a consulting firm and contract with them for the project. The R2v3 SERI website has a list of consultants that can be utilized to find a consultant that fits your needs.

Using a SERI approved consultant means they’ve been trained to understand the requirements of the standard and can significantly expedite the certification process. As a consultant, we have seen all sides of the certification process, this allows us to streamline the documentation that needs to be created for certification so that it is as lean as possible to manage. There is generally a hefty price tag associated with using a consultant starting at least $5000 to $8000 per project and up. But, it is the ultimate short cut and for many of the businesses we work with it is the only reasonable way to ensure certification success. Prices vary highly in the industry and will depend on the scope of the project. The scope will be based on the standards requirements, size and complexity of the business activities.

The consulting project will be multifaced and will first establish an understanding of where the organization is currently meeting the requirements of the standard. A Gap Analysis is usually performed to determine the current status of the organization. The next step will be to establish the R2v3 management system documentation. The R2v3 standard requires that organizations either certify to one of the following, environmental health and safety standard schemes:

Option 1 – Certification to the Recycling Industry Operational Standard (RIOS) or

Option 2 – Both ISO 14001:2015 Environmental Management System Standard and

ISO 45001:2018 Health and Safety Management System Standard.

Note: An additional standard is required as well if the organization perform testing and repair activities: ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System Standard (the organization substitute this standard for the RIOS standard as it also contains quality elements that satisfy the R2v3 standard.

Step Two – Selecting a Registrar and Implementing your R2v3 Management System

Selecting a qualified registrar (aka certification body) is relatively straight forward. Your consulting firm will likely have a network of familiar and trusted auditors to give you fair and value-added audit. The quality of your R2v3 third-party certification audit is really only as good as your auditor. Not all auditors are created equal so it’s important to select an individual that has “good bed side manner” and is a decent human to work with. An auditor’s industry and business experience is also critically important to look into. Your consultant will be able to navigate you through this process and also assist you in getting a competitive quote from the registrar. Once you have selected a registrar you and your consultant can begin scheduling the registration audits and select an auditor. In terms of the timeline, their two main assessment that will occur roughly 60-90 days after the initiation of the certification project. Timeline will vary but this would be the best-case scenario for an organization that is moving quickly towards certification.

The stage 1 assessment (audit) will be aa document review to determine your readiness to move on to the stage 2 certification audit. Approximately 30-60 days following the stage 1 audit your stage 2 will be scheduled. This is the final audit to determine if your organization has implemented and is meeting all of the requirements of the standards that you are certifying to. Once the audit is completed any non-conformances or issues discovered will need to be addressed and effective closed prior to your R2v3 certification being issued. The registrar will the make a certification decision granting your organization R2v3 certification.

Step Three – Maintaining your R2v3 Management System

This step is largely forgotten by many organizations. It is pretty straight forward to get R2v3 certified. It is however a constant challenge for most organization to maintain the certification, keeping up with all the requirements over the next 12 months after certification. SERI R2v3 requires that annual third-party audit be conducted. That means you will be audited once a year every year to maintain your certification in good standing. Some of the major maintenance activities include:

· Regular and annual data security and QEHS related training for staff

· Training record retention

· Internal Audits

· Legal Compliance Evaluation

· Data Security Audit

· Management Review Meetings

· Facility Inspections

· Calibration Program

· Equipment Maintenance Programs

· Documenting and Addressing Non-conformance

· Downstream Vendor Approval and record retention

· Data Sanitization record retention

· Device testing records

For most organization, post certification becomes a time to go back to business as usual. This ultimately will lead to issues down the road. Resources need to be effectively allocated in order to maintain the R2v3 management system. What you do not want is to spend all this money, time and effort into getting certified only to come to your annual surveillance audit one year after certification and lose your R2v3 certificate. Putting together a R2v3 management system maintenance program is key in order to ensure you don’t let your hard work and R2 certification waste away.

How to Determine your R2v3 Scope of Certification

Benefits of utilizing a consultant for SERI R2v3 ISO 9001, 14001, and 45001

R2v3 Reuse and Recycling Focus Material: A Closer Look

SERI – Standard Link and Code of Practice – Link


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