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The EU BIC Certification Process

“The questionnaire itself has been a very useful tool to support the thinking behind the process of the establishment of the EU|BIC within the Ruse Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Indeed, the whole accreditation process was a sort of ’incubation process of the EU|BIC itself within a host organisation, allowing it to operate as fully independent entity.” Milen Dobrev, InnovBridge BIC, Ruse, Bulgaria.

Becoming a 'Candidate EU|BIC'

The process towards EU-BIC accreditation always starts with becoming an EBN Associate as a “candidate EU|BIC”. The application form can be downloaded here, and make sure to tick the box “Candidate EU|BIC”.

As soon as the membership is approved by the EBN Board of Directors (through an on-line consultation which lasts two/three weeks), You will be able to access the online questionnaire.

The Questionnaire

The online self-assessment questionnaire is the first tool used by the EBN to assess the compliance to the EU|BIC quality mark criteria providing a first in-depth picture of the candidate in terms of profiling and of performances indicators.

The Audit

Audits are organized for two main purposes, the first one being to enable first time accreditations of candidate EU|BIC, the second being to re-assess the compliance to the EU|BIC criteria to existing EU|BIC. The audit is carried out by one of the EBN accredited experts. These are all, or have been, EU|BIC directors or senior EU|BIC staff members. Whether you are a candidate EU|BIC, or an existing one selected within the evaluation program, an audit is a rare occasion to get reviewed by one of your peers, and therefore it should be welcomed as an occasion to share expertise and benchmark your incubation and acceleration programmes, tools, methodologies and indicators. Indeed the EBN evaluators are trained to come with a “technical assistance” mind-set added to the one of auditor.

The EU|BIC Quality Mark Committee (BQMC)

'Quality assurance is not an easy task, and when it comes to assessing the compliance to the EU|BIC Quality Mark Criteria it gets even more complicated. Indeed the criteria do not force a model upon organizations as there are many organizational models that can be locally pursued while meeting the compliance with the criteria. The complexity of each different situation, varies along with the variety of the European, and recently also extra-European, regions. Different actors, different ecosystems, different entrepreneurial communities, require different support models. Therefore we need to adopt an attitude which is both rigid, as the criteria need to be met, and open, as we need to acknowledge that there are many different ways through which the criteria can be met, and that we may very well bump in new ways every time we have a discussion' Lennard Drogendijk, CEO Business Development Friesland

The BQMC, composed by EU|BIC directors, external experts and the European Commission (DG Enterprise & Industry), is the guardian of the EU|BIC label and is the body devoted to take a final decision on the granting (or not) of the label, and taking the right decision is therefore, not always a straightforward task.

Operatively the BQMC will take one of the following decisions:

  • The BQMC verifies the compliance of the candidate organisation to the EU|BIC Quality Mark Criteria, therefore entrusts ebn to enter in a 3-year contract (automatically renewable unless quality assurance problems arise in the meantime) with the new EU|BIC to grant the use of the EU-BIC trademark.
  • The BQMC verifies that the criteria are not met, therefore denies the use of the label.
  • The BQMC verifies that the organisation is almost compliant with the criteria and therefore entrusts EBN to enter in a 1-year contract to use the EU-BIC label, and sets some mandatory conditions that need to be met in a 1-year time.
  • Once the candidate EU|BIC has been accepted in the EU|BIC club as full member, the only obligation it carries is to comply with the quality process filling the quality questionnaire within the deadline every year, and accommodate an audit if selected in the year’s evaluation program.


Re-certifying with pride

Read all about the peer review process enabling you to conclude the assessment, certification, and learning cycle by recertifying with pride.

See the EU|BIC Peer Review Scheme here.

Published on 05-02-2014 00:00 by David Tee. 9556 page views

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