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Types of agreements

Types of agreements

A standard is a voluntary agreement between interested parties about a product, service or process. Standardization is the process of arriving at a standard. This process is open, transparent and consensus-oriented. The agreements are laid down in terms and definitions, functional and performance-oriented requirements, determination methods and “best practices”.

We offer the following types of agreements, which differ in the degree of:

  • representation of stakeholders;
  • to consult through a public comment round;
  • principle of decision-making (consensus or vote);
  • lead time of the process;
  • demanding or informative character.

Standards (NEN, NEN-EN and NEN-ISO)

Document, established by consensus and approved by a recognized body, that provides, for common and repeated use, rules, guidelines or characteristics for activities or their results, aimed at the achievement of the optimum degree of order in a given context.

The characteristics that give standards value is the
fact that they are:

  • Voluntary and market driven
  • Consensus based
  • Approved by a recognized body

They are developed with a broad representation of stakeholders, with a public comment period of at least 3 months and lead time depending on internationalization from 1 year to a maximum of 3 years. The result is a standard with wide support and authority.

Dutch Practical Guideline (NPR)

Informative agreement – broad representation of stakeholders – according to consensus – a public comment period of at least 3 months – lead time on average 1 year. The result is a practical elaboration of the provisions in a standard and contains, for example, explanations of standards, construction options, working methods and manufacturing data.

Dutch Technical Agreement (NTA)

Requirements agreement – a public agreement between two or more interested parties – consensus is not required – public comment round is optional – lead time is shorter than with a standard. The result is an agreement that can be reached more quickly, which can offer added value in sectors where developments are rapid and / or in the case of innovative concepts.

NEN Spec

In order to respond as effectively as possible to the need among innovative concept holders for a rapid realization of agreements with relevant stakeholders, NEN has developed a fast-track procedure in addition to the more traditional forms of standards and private agreements.

The fast track standard is called NEN Spec and can be used to arrive at supported and practically applicable agreements with relevant stakeholders within a few weeks. By entrusting a small Task Force with the rapid delivery of a 80% version, by making use of new forms of online collaboration and by compressing process steps as much as possible, these types of agreements are drawn up in a short time, but unambiguously and with maintaining the regular quality and reliability offered by NEN.

Click here to read more about the NEN Spec.

Industry agreement, code of conduct and covenant

Agreements within a sector/industry or cross-sectoral – the degree of representation of stakeholders differs – decision-making at your own discretion – public comment round optional – NEN offers guidance and coordination for this type of agreement.