ISO 37001 Certifications
Anti-bribery Management Systems

What is ISO 37001

ISO 37001, published in 2016 as a Type A management system standard (MSS), defines and guides the establishment, implementation, monitoring, maintenance, and continuous development of an ABMS.

An ISO 37001-based ABMS is designed to assist organisations in successfully preventing, detecting, and responding to bribery. The criterion does not apply to other types of corruption, such as fraud. The standard’s requirements are generic and apply to all organizations, regardless of style, size, or industry. (public, private, or not-for-profit). Additionally, ISO 37001 can be used to combat bribery by or on behalf of the company, as well as direct and indirect bribery.

History of ISO 37001

The UK Bribery Act was passed in 2010. It made the failure of an institution to avoid bribery a criminal offence. However, the organisation’s defence was that it had adopted adequate anti-bribery procedures. As a result, efforts to create an anti-bribery standard began. The British Standards Institution (BSI), the UK’s national standards organization, published the BS 10500 Anti-bribery Management System in 2011. It was created for organisations in the public and private sectors that wished to implement adequate anti-bribery procedures. The ISO 19600 Standard for compliance management systems was released in 2014. However, this was not a certifiable requirements standard, but rather guidance to assist a company in implementing a compliance programme.

According to Neill Stansbury, one of the project’s initiators, the only way to achieve an international breakthrough was to have a certifiable international anti-bribery requirements standard.

Work began on developing ISO 37001 as a standard for any sort of entity. This included private businesses and government agencies, as well as non-governmental groups. (NGOs). Parallel to this, a special committee assured coordination with the pre-existing ISO 19600 compliance standard. ISO 37001 replaced the BS 10500 specification in 2016.

The latest version of 37001

ISO 37001 is intended to provide “requirements with guidance for use for a management system designed to assist an organisation in preventing, detecting, and responding to bribery and complying with anti-bribery laws and voluntary commitments applicable to its activities.” (ISO 2016). In other words, it specifies the minimal requirements as well as the associated guidance for implementing or improving an anti-bribery management system. It is a risk control tool for corruption. It enables a company to take reasonable measures to avoid, detect, and control bribery risks.

Use of ISO 37001 can help improve the business environment, good governance, and development issues

ISO 37001 seeks to reduce the risk of bribery throughout the global value chain. The advantages of adopting ABMS in your organisation are as follows :

  • Recognizing and managing the bribery risk, as well as other risks such as image risk
  • Developing minimum standards and supporting guidelines for implementing or measuring the efficacy of an anti-bribery management system
  • Demonstrating to the organisation’s governing body, management, investors, staff, customers, regulators, and other stakeholders that sufficient measures are being taken to avoid, detect, and address bribery
  • Reducing the likelihood of bribery in connection with the organisation’s operations
  • Increasing the organisation’s standing, image, and brand while also promoting its long-term viability
  • Boosting the organisation’s reputation, image, and identity while also promoting its long-term viability

ISO 37001 Structure (ABMS)

This paper only applies to bribery. It specifies the requirements and provides advice for a management system intended to assist an organisation in preventing, detecting, and responding to bribery, as well as complying with anti-bribery laws and voluntary commitments relevant to its activities.

This document does not explicitly address fraud, cartels and other anti-trust/competition violations, money-laundering, or other corrupt practices, though an organisation may choose to broaden the scope of the management system to include such activities.

This document’s requirements are generic and meant to apply to all organisations (or sections of organisations), regardless of type, size, or nature of activity, and whether in the public, private, or not-for-profit sectors.

Quality/Principles of ISO 37001

This ISO standard demonstrates to clients, investors, and business partners that your organisation has implemented the programs, systems, and controls that strengthen your business defences and fortify the integrity of your business operations against unmitigated losses resulting from corruption or corporate liabilities.

This certification is typically the final stage in your integrity-building efforts. Don’t worry, we’ll walk you through the review and implementation steps to acquire your ISO 37001 certification.

Know all about ISO 37001

Terms Associated With ISO 37001

  • Bribery : In violation of applicable law, offering, promising, giving, accepting, or soliciting an undue advantage of any value (which could be financial or non-financial), directly or indirectly, and regardless of location(s), as an inducement or reward for a person acting or refraining from acting in relation to the performance (3.16) of that person’s duties.
  • Organisation : A person or collection of people with their own functions, responsibilities, authorities, and relationships to accomplish their goals

    The term “organization” encompasses, but is not limited to, a sole trader, a business, a corporation, a firm, an enterprise, an authority, a partnership, a charity, or an institution, or any portion or combination of these entities, whether incorporated or not, public or private.

  • Interested Party : (Preferred Term)
    Person or organisation that can affect, is affected by, or perceives itself to be affected by a decision or action
  • Stakeholder : (Admitted Term)
    A stakeholder can be internal or external to the organisation
  • Requirement

    Need that is stated and Obligatory

    The fundamental definition of “requirement” in ISO management system standards is “stated, generally implied, or obligatory need or expectation.” In the framework of anti-bribery management, “generally implied requirements” are inapplicable.

    “Generally implied” indicates that the need or expectation under consideration is implied by tradition or common practise for the organisation and interested parties.

    A specified requirement is one that is mentioned, such as in documentation.

  • Management System
    A collection of interconnected or interacting elements within an organisation that establishes policies, objectives, and procedures for achieving those objectives

    ● A management system can handle a single or multiple disciplines.
    ● The management system components include the structure of the company, roles and responsibilities, planning, and operation.
    ● A management system’s scope can include the entire organization, specific and identified functions of the organization, specific and identified sections of the organization, or one or more functions across a collection of organisations.

  • Top Management
    A person or group of persons in charge of directing and controlling an organisation at the highest level (3.2)

    Note 1: Within the company, top management has the authority to delegate authority and provide resources.

    Note 2 on the entry: If the management system’s scope (3.5) only encompasses a portion of an organization, top management refers to those who direct and control that portion of the organisation.

    Note 3 on the entry : Organizations can be organised based on the legal framework under which they must function, as well as their size, industry, and so on. Some organisations have a governing body (3.7) as well as top management, whereas others do not have duties divided into multiple bodies. When applying the requirements in Clause 5, these differences, both in terms of organisation and duties, can be taken into account.

  • Governing Body :

    Group or body with ultimate duty and power over an organisation’s (3.2) activities, governance, and policies, to which top management (3.6) reports and is held accountable

    Note 1: Not all organizations, especially tiny ones, will have a governing body separate from top management. (see 3.6, Note 3 to entry).

    Note 2: on the entry: A governing group may consist of, but is not limited to, a board of directors, board committees, a supervisory board, trustees, or overseers.

  • Anti-Bribery Compliance Function :

    Person(s) in charge of and authorised to operate the anti-bribery management system

  • Effectiveness

    The degree to which planned activities and results are realised

  • Policy

    Intentions and direction of an organization (3.2), as formally expressed by its top management (3.6) or its governing body (3.7)

  • Objective

    To be accomplished

    Note 1: An goal can be strategic, tactical, or operational in nature.

    Note 2: Objectives can be related to various disciplines (such as financial, sales and marketing, procurement, health and safety, and environmental objectives) and applied at different levels (such as strategic, organizational wide, project, product, and process (3.15)).

    Note 3 on the entry: An objective can also be stated in other ways, such as as an intended result, a purpose, an operational criterion, an anti-bribery objective, or by using similar terms (e.g. aim, goal, or target).

    Note 4 on the entry: Anti-bribery objectives are set by the organisation (3.2), in accordance with the anti-bribery policy (3.10), to accomplish specific results in the context of anti-bribery management systems (3.5).

  • Principles Of ISO 37001

    In 2016, the International Standards Organization (ISO) released the first global anti-bribery management system (ABMS) standard, ISO 37001, as the global standard anti-bribery plan. It contains effective elements for combating bribery and corruption, with the following essential components:

    ● Risk assessment for bribery and misconduct
    ● Board and management duties for leadership
    ● Human resource components include the selection and training of employees who have been exposed to bribery and corruption
    ● Organizational and individual anti-corruption due diligence
    ● Anti-bribery and corruption policies; gifts and hospitality;
    ● Donations and supportControls, both financial and non-financial, for the discovery and prevention of corrupt practises
    ● Supply network reliability
    ● Whistle-blowing
    ● Monitoring, reviewing, and enforcing

    This ISO standard demonstrates to clients, investors, and business partners that your organisation has implemented the programs, systems, and controls that strengthen your business defences and fortify the integrity of your business operations against unmitigated losses resulting from corruption or corporate liabilities.

    This certification is typically the final stage in your integrity-building efforts. Don’t worry, we’ll walk you through the review and implementation steps to acquire your ISO 37001 certification.

Documentation for ISO 37001 (ABMS)

Download PDF For Complete Documentation

The organisation must continuously improve its anti-bribery management system by maintaining, establishing, implementing, and giving documented information.

The Documents required to obtain ISO 37001

Process Of Obtaining ISO 37001

ISO 37001 is a certification standard that specifies the standards for establishing, implementing, maintaining, reviewing, and upgrading an anti-bribery management system (ABMS). Obtaining ISO 37001 certification entails multiple steps, which are listed below:

It should be noted that the procedure of gaining ISO 37001 certification may differ based on the size, complexity, and nature of your organization’s operations. To guarantee a smooth and successful certification procedure, it is recommended that you seek the advice of an expert consultant.

Benefits of ISO 37001

You may be wondering why you need to become ISO 37001 approved for anti-bribery. There are numerous advantages, but we will only cover the most important ones. There are numerous reasons why your organisation or company should develop, implement, review, maintain, and constantly enhance an effective Anti-Bribery Management System. You will experience the following advantages with such an efficient system:

  • Building Trust And Confidence

    Companies that have implemented ABMS and acquired ISO 37001 certification find it much simpler to collaborate and even win more clients and business partners. People are more likely to trust businesses that have anti-bribery policies in place or a proven Anti-Bribery Management System. But how else can you demonstrate that you have a successful ABMS in place that your partners and clients can rely on?

    The ISO 37001 certification will provide you and your business partners with faith and confidence. The sooner you get it, the better, because the habit is irritating more and more people. Don’t let this vice ruin your business because getting certified doesn’t take a lot of money.

  • Resolving Bribery Related Issues And Timely Detection

    Bribery, if allowed to flourish, can bring your business or organisation to its knees. If you do not address bribery-related problems, the anti-bribery laws will undoubtedly catch up with you. Don’t put off paying the hefty penalties that your government will impose for noncompliance with anti-bribery laws.

    Early detection of bribery will assist you in taking timely actions, saving you from many other issues that may arise as a result of it. Bribery is nearly impossible to perpetrate and get away with when ABMS is on the lookout. You can depend on Anti-Bribery ISO 37001 to create and maintain an effective ABMS that will assist you in combating bribery in your organisation.

  • Maintains Integrity of The Organization

    Bribery is, without a doubt, the worst crime that can be reported from your organisation. Will you wait until your reputation is ruined before pursuing ISO 37001 certification, or will you act immediately to add value to your already excellent reputation? Remember that once you’ve ruined your image, you may never regain it, or it will take years to regain the trust and confidence of clients and other investors.

    Nothing is more essential to you or your company than a good reputation. Having an ISO certification is one of the best ways to maintain and improve your image because it allows you to avoid or limit vices like bribery.

  • Managing Funds Smartly

    Paying bribery is an expensive and wasteful practise. Can you imagine paying bribes to obtain a tender or a contract that you are qualified for? Isn’t it excruciating? The same is true for losing a tender that was granted to someone else simply because they have something to press in the tendering committee’s hands.

    Bribery can also cause problems with the authority in charge of enforcing anti-bribery legislation. If you are caught in the act, you will be fined or have your licence revoked depending on where you reside. All of this is avoided by adopting, reviewing, maintaining, and constantly improving ABMS.

Relevant Industries For ISO 37001

ISO 37001 may be adopted by any entity, large or small, in the public, private, or nonprofit sectors, and in any country. It is a flexible tool that can be tailored to the size, nature, and bribery risk of the organisation. Examples of organisations that can benefit from an ABMS system include:

Law firms
Financial institutions
Public hospitals
Local governments

Future of ISO 37001

ISO 37001 is a standard that outlines and guides the implementation of an anti-bribery management system. The standard was first published in 2016, and it has subsequently garnered significant acceptance in organisations worldwide. ISO 37001 has a bright future, and various developments are likely to influence its evolution:

Adoption is increasing:

As the risks and consequences of bribery become increasingly evident, more organisations are expected to adopt ISO 37001. The standard establishes a thorough framework for bribery risk management and can assist organisations in demonstrating their commitment to ethical business practises.

Continued development:

Because ISO 37001 is a relatively new standard, there will almost certainly be more development as organisations acquire more experience applying it. This could include the creation of new best practises or extra information on specific anti-bribery management challenges.

Greater integration:

As organizations embrace more management system standards, there will be more integration between ISO 37001 and other standards such as ISO 9001 (quality management) or ISO 14001 (environmental management). This could assist organizations in improving the efficiency and alignment of their management systems.

Third-party certification:

As organizations attempt to demonstrate compliance with anti-bribery laws and regulations, third-party certification to ISO 37001 is anticipated to become increasingly relevant. This could result in more stringent certification systems and increased standardization of the certification process.

Overall, the future of ISO 37001 appears bright, with rising adoption, ongoing development, better interaction with other management system standards, and the growing importance of third-party certification.

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