The Organisation, Law & Accreditation Directorate ensures the efficient operation of SECO’s business. The Swiss Accreditation Service SAS examines and accredits conformity assessment bodies.
The Organisation, Law & Accreditation Directorate’s key responsibilities at a glance
- Accreditation of conformity assessment bodies
- Business management
- IT and information management
- Financial resource management
- Human resource management
- Legal services and implementation (UCA and PIO as well as travelling trades)
- Risk management
In addition to the traditional legal services provided by the Organisation, Law & Accreditation Directorate, SECO exercises the federal government’s right to take legal action in accordance with the Unfair Competition Act (UCA). The Directorate also represents Switzerland’s interests within the ICPEN, the International Consumer Protection and Enforcement Network, particularly with regard to internet scams. The Directorate furthermore provides the general public with relevant recommendations and advice, and it monitors cantonal implementation of the Price Indication Ordinance (PIO). The Directorate coordinates cantonal measures and licensing procedures for travelling trades, fairgrounds and circuses.
The Directorate coordinates several thousand items of official business every year. It ensures that SECO’s business for the Federal Council and Parliament are processed smoothly. It also ensures that SECO is able to adopt a timely position on matters from other federal departments as part of consultation proceedings. The Human Resources section looks after roughly 800 staff in Switzerland and abroad, and plays an active role in building SECO’s image as an attractive employer.
In the area of finance, the Directorate manages an annual budget of around CHF 1 billion and processes around 20,000 financial documents. The IT and Information Management section provides IT support for staff and provides information management services. The Logistics section ensures staff have a safe working environment and are supplied with appropriate office equipment, allowing them to carry out their work efficiently. The Directorate is also responsible for controlling and the coordination of risk management at federal office level.
For quality and trade
The Swiss Accreditation Service SAS examines and accredits calibration and testing laboratories, inspection and certification bodies, reference material producers and proficiency testing providers. Accreditation formally acknowledges the competence of a body to execute conformity assessments according to specified requirements. The aim of accreditation is to strengthen confidence in the competence and services of the accredited bodies. The assessments carried out by these bodies in turn reliably guarantee the quality and safety of the tested products and services. They also ensure that products and services meet minimum technical standards and the regulatory requirements. The SAS functions under the supervision of the State Secretariat of Economic Affairs (SECO). However, it takes decisions concerning accreditation independently and autonomously – in accordance with the applicable national and international requirements.
Last modification 20.01.2021