R2 CERTIFICATION / RESPONSIBLE RECYCLING
BENEFITS TO R2 CERTIFICATION
- Promotes safe and effective recovery and reuse of electronic equipment
- Guards downstream control of the recycling chain
- Minimizes environmental and public health risks
- Demonstrates compliance with domestic and international laws
- Minimizes liability and encourages reduced insurance costs for recyclers
- Assists original equipment manufacturers (OEM’s) with due diligence for their end-of-life electronics
- Instills public confidence through certified third party review
R2 recycling plants are those plants dedicated and committed to the responsible disposal and recycling of electronics and electronic components. Therefore, it’s a very specific set of standards for a niche market. However, as niche of a market as electronic recycling may be, it’s an extremely critical industry for our society to properly move forward and continue to make technological advancements.
While the latest update to the R2 standards came in 2013, there is some thought that the next iteration will be paired with ISO standards, and possibly the ISO standards that fall into the 9001 family – quality management.
Okay with the annual fee and the audits out of the way, how long is it going to take to become an R2 certified recycler? Well, the answer can vary depending on the size and state of your organization.
However, don’t start sweating, the R2 certification process can take as little as 4 weeks. That’s really just one month’s time for your organization to seek and obtain an R2 certification.
Upon submitting the application, along with the annual fee, the plant that seeks the R2 certification has a few more steps to take before they can claim themselves R2 certified.
After submitting the application the recycler is required to contact a certification body. These are third-party-organizations that conduct an external audit of the systems, processes, and documentation standards that exist within any company or recycling plant in question.
Once the audit is passed, the recycler is R2 certified and gains all of the benefits that come with. However, it’s important to note that passing the audit once doesn’t suffice. After a recycling plant achieves R2 certification, they must undergo continuous auditing on a scheduled, but random, basis.
These continuous audits ensure that the recycling plant maintains its standards in operating efficiently, safely, and with preservation and sustainability both in mind.
Nothing in life comes free, that’s a lesson many of us learn as early as grade-school. However, some costs in life are investments, and others are simply expenses. The difference is that an expense will depreciate in value, or steadily decline in worth; an investment, on the other hand, has the potential to grow in value, covering not only it’s own cost, but then generating additional revenue through multiple avenues as well.
Investing in the R2 recycling certification process sets up systems, processes, and procedures within the recycling plant that address operational efficiency and cost-reduction issues. This, in turn, leads to a more cost-effective operation from top to bottom.
That being said, the R2 certification requires the application, and then a $1,500 annual fee. This fee drops down to $1,000 annually for tax-exempt organizations such as non profits. After the application and the annual fee are submitted, the certification process can begin.
A LAST WORD ON R2 RECYCLING STANDARDS
The R2 recycling standards are a series of standards that electronic recyclers can obtain. The standards address a series of industry-regulations, establish industry best-practices within your organization, and prioritize the health and safety of the employees within your organization as well.
All-in-all there is a myriad of external and internal benefits to obtaining R2 certification. For more information on R2 certification and responsible recycling practices, visit Glacier Consulting and get in touch with an expert ISO consultant today.
The current version of R2 is R2:2013 with an update called R2v3 that release in July of 2020 Please follow us on social media as we will communicate regularly about this update!
ADDITIONAL R2 CERTIFIED RECYCLING RESOURCES
The R2 Certification Standards
The Sustainable Electronics Recycling International (SERI) organization created the R2 Recycling Certification, which consists of a set of guidelines. To obtain R2 certification, an electronics recycling facility must follow some basic requirements. These requirements include:
- Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) Management System
- Legal and Regulatory Compliance
- Data Security
- Reusability and Functionality Testing
- Focus on Reuse
- Employee Health and Safety
- Documentation and Record-Keeping
- Supply Chain Management
- Export and Import Requirements
- Focus on Continuous Improvement
- Auditing and Certification
Steps in the Certification Process
- Understanding The Requirements: Stay up-to-date with all the latest updates, training notifications, and other vital information regarding the R2 Certification Program.
Implementation: To become certified, you must carefully record all of the operations and procedures that take place at your business and include R2 standards into your daily workflow.
- Collect Records & Evidence: Start gathering documents and supporting documentation to prove that you have complied with all R2 criteria.
- Internal Audit: Once you’ve integrated the R2 requirements, it’s time to conduct an ISO internal audit. This audit will assist in determining any necessary corrections or modifications.
- Certification Audit: Schedule an audit with a Certification Body that has been approved by SERI.
- Maintaining R2 Certification: Facilities must pay the annual R2 License Fee and submit to an annual audit demonstrating continuing compliance to the R2 Standard in order to maintain their R2 Certification.
Certified Electronics Recycling & SERI
Sustainable Electronics Recycling International (SERI) is a non-profit organization with a primary goal of to maximize the social and economic advantages that come from utilized and end-of-life electronics while simultaneously reducing the hazards to the environment and human health. The Responsible Recycling (R2) standard for electronics was established by SERI, which is well-known for promoting the environmentally conscious, resource-efficient, and worker and community well-being elements of the sustainable reuse and recycling of electronic equipment. A cooperative partnership between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), state agency regulators, electronics recyclers, recycler customers, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) resulted in the creation of Responsible Recycling (R2). These parties were all committed to environmental protection and corporate responsibility. R2 is the most environmentally friendly method of handling mobile devices that have reached the end of their useful lives as it has become the most commonly accepted standard for the ethical reuse and recycling of old electronics.
Make Your Business Environment Responsible
When a company holds an R2 Recycling Certification, it not only safeguards the environment but also ensures the proper destruction of data obtained from end-of-life technology. The R2 certification process addresses various challenges faced by businesses, including environmental concerns, human health, and social welfare impacts, within the framework of the circular economy. While reusing technology is essential, it’s essential to address the issue of irresponsible and illegal transfers disguised as reuse. With an R2 certified company, you can trust that such careless transfers will not be a concern.
When a company holds R2 certification, you can have peace of mind knowing that your data and end-of-life technology are in safe hands, poised to achieve their full end-of-life potential. As an R2 certified recycler at Securis, we recognize the global significance of this mission.
Feel free to connect with Glacier Consulting today to discover how we can assist your company in fulfilling its role in the sustainability cycle and maintaining eco-friendly practices.
Frequently Asked Question
ISO certification follows the same process, regardless of the ISO standard you are seeking:
- Establish, implement and verify your ISO management system
- Stage 1 audit – Documentation Review
- Stage 2 audit – Full system audit
- Closure of any findings
The standards that best suit your company vary by the industry you are in. In order to identify the standards that will provide your company with the greatest benefits, we recommend the following:
- Talk to your customers – many of them may require certain ISO standards.
- Evaluate your companies risks – see where your companies great liabilities are what needs to be controlled (e.g. quality, environmental aspects, health & safety hazards, IT security, etc.).
- Be proactive and identify new business opportunities – evaluate new areas / industries you want to grow your business. Often times, these new industries may require some sort of certification in order to enter. Certification takes time, so being proactive and having the certifications before bidding on projects can put you ahead of your competition.
The time to become ISO certified really depends on a few different factors:
- The resources you have available to support the ISO process
- Your own internal timeframe that you need / want to be certified by
- The standard’s requirement for how much evidence you need to support certification
Certification requires you to show through objective evidence that you have an effective ISO management system in place. In order to do this, you need to show that you have sufficient evidence available to support this claim. At a minimum, most standards will require 3 months of evidence of implementing your management system in order to be certified.
Some standards, such as IATF 16949, may require a minimum of one year of evidence to support certification.
The cost for certification can vary greatly from one company to another. There are typically several factors that go into the costs for certification:
- Certification body fees
- Certification body audit day rates
- Auditor travel costs
- Standard license fees (e.g. R2, RIOS, eStewards license fees)
- Consulting Fees
Audit time and consulting time is typically based on the following factors:
- Number of employees
- Number of processes and the risks associated with those processes
- Number of locations
We have the experience to help you navigate the certification body costs and possible discounts they can offer.
ISO certification shows your customers that you follow industry best practices and that your business is well structured and ready for growth.
Each ISO standard has its own benefits, for example:
- ISO 9001 – Ensures you provide your customers with a quality product or service
- ISO 27001 – Protects your information, data and reputation
- ISO 14001 – Reduces your environmental impact
- ISO 45001 – Protects your workers
- Responsible Recycling (R2) – ensures responsible management of used electronics
Common benefits across all ISO standard include:
- Increased efficiency
- Reduced costs
- Improved customer satisfaction
- More engaged employees
- Reduced risks
- Reduced insurance premiums
- Helps with project bidding
By achieving and maintaining an ISO certification, you are showing your company’s commitment to achieving your objectives, improving your business and increasing the credibility and customer confidence in your product or service.
Yes. We have been providing remote auditing and consulting services for years. We have found remote auditing and consulting to be just as effective as on-site. We use a variety of tools to ensure we are thorough in our remote services, while saving you time and money.
The great thing about working with Glacier consulting is that you don’t need anything in place to get started. We will work with you ever step of the way to ensure you have everything you need to get certified.
Most companies have far more in place than they realize. Just because it may not be documented, doesn’t mean you don’t have processes in place. We will work with your team to improve, streamline and formalize these processes.
One of the most common questions we get is how much time and effort does it take to get and maintain certification. The bulk of the effort should be at the beginning to get your management system established and implemented. To do this, we take what you already do and formalize it to meet the standard requirements. There may be some minor tweaking done, but this typically only improves and streamlines your process.
Once your ISO management system is in place, maintaining it should be as easy as breathing because it should become part of your culture and everyday operations. At the end of the day, you shouldn’t think of it as your ISO system, you should think of it as simply your way of operating your company.
We work with countless ISO standards. We’ve only listed the most common ISO standards typically sought after. We have a diverse team with tremendous knowledge in many of the ISO standards. Contact us and let us know what standard you are interested in. If we don’t offer that service, we can find you someone who can.
We can tailor a service specific to your needs to help you along your ISO journey. We can provide basic guidance to full “White Glove” support. If it’s business or ISO related, we’ve got you covered. A few of our services include:
- General ISO Consulting
- Documentation Prep
Contact us with any questions you have or for services not listed here.