The construction industry helps fuel Quebec’s economy. Today, one in every 20 jobs in the province is related in some way to construction. And like most regions around the world, Canadian construction sites are moving toward consensus-based standards to ensure consumer and client concerns are addressed effectively. The Bureau de normalisation du Québec (BNQ) is responsible for developing the standards that are incorporated into Québec’s construction regulations. These standards ensure consumers can have confidence in the safety of the buildings where they live, work and play.
Accreditation plays a pivotal role in supporting professionals in the construction industry. Created in 1961, BNQ provides standardization services in Quebec and is accredited by the Standards Council of Canada (SCC). This accreditation allows BNQ to certify businesses in Canada and around the world by guaranteeing their procedures and methods comply with International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and World Trade Organization (WTO) requirements. For BNQ’s clients, certification from an accredited body acts as a “calling card” that demonstrates that their products and services comply with applicable standards and meet the levels of quality and safety that consumers expect.
BNQ is accredited to certify the products, processes and people that ensure Quebec’s construction industry is safe, reliable, and sustainable. One of the important ways accreditation helps BNQ build a stronger construction industry is through ISO 9001, an international standard that specifies requirements for a quality management system (QMS). BNQ certifies construction businesses to this standard and organizations use it to demonstrate their ability to provide products and services that meet customer and regulatory requirements. For example, Quebec’s Department of Transportation (Transports, Mobilité durable et Électrification des transports) now only works with construction suppliers that are certified under the ISO 9001 standard.
"The BNQ certification attests to the concrete’s compliance with the standard in force, thus confirming its quality and that its suppliers adhere to good industry practices."
-Luc Bédard, Executive Director, Association Béton Québec
BNQ has also developed a guide to help their clients oversee their construction or professional service contracts where the supplier is ISO 9001-certified. The BNQ 9922-100 guide enables contractors to better manage their own contracts under ISO 9000. It also sets out the roles and responsibilities of all the main players in a construction project, as well as possible approaches to process performance, monitoring and product control methods—so everyone knows what to expect and what is expected of them.
This certification is just one of the many ways BNQ is working to ensure consumers can be confident—in the building products used in their homes, workplaces and infrastructure and in the professionals constructing and inspecting these installations—and that Canada’s system of standardization and accreditation is continually working to protect their health and safety.