The research firm Persistence Market Research (PMR) has released an industry report that suggests the worldwide market for ISO certifications will lose up to $9,000,000,000 by the year 2025. PMR estimates the current value of the market, as of 2017, is $11.8 B, but will drop to $2.8B. The drop is explained as a result of the current push towards upgrading systems to the new standards, which temporarily boosts the market, but which will then result in a precipitous drop thereafter.

Oxebridge estimates the US domestic market for ISO 9001 is valued at $1.5B, a lower figure than what is estimated by PMR. Both firms agree that during transition years, such as we are in now, that number is temporarily increased as companies are forced to spend additional money on the purchase of standards, additional audits, training and consulting services.

The amount of that market value which goes directly to ISO will be evident once ISO publishes its 2017 Annual Report. Reports of revenue generated by private accreditation bodies and certification bodies are unlikely to be available.

The value of ISO certifications is under increased scrutiny in the United States, as the costs associated with certification, training and consulting is typically flowed down to either consumers or taxpayers, if not both. The US government voted to allow privatization of standardization in 1993, when the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued Circular A-119, killing government standards and establishing “policies on Federal use and development of voluntary consensus standards and on conformity assessment activities.” This handed the role of US standard-making to ISO, allowing ANSI to merely ratify standards originally created out of Geneva. As more and more scandals and deadly accidents occur under ISO certified firms, and as industry is moving back towards redundant customer 2nd party audits, the value of this decision is being re-examined.