IECEx Personnel Competence Certification Scheme

Published 13 Mar 2020

Thorne & Derrick & SGS Baseefa

Hazardous Area & Explosive Atmosphere Experts

  • Article Republished with Kind Permission of SGS Baseefa | 4 of 5 Articles 
    Uploaded by Natalie Lundie | Supply Chain: Marketing Lead at Thorne & Derrick International

IECEx Personnel Competence Certification Scheme

Helping To Protect Employees & Plants from the Risk of Explosion in Hazardous Areas

Thorne & Derrick, the Experts in Equipment for Explosive Atmospheres, with the permission of SGS Baseefa are providing a series of articles to advocate the importance of independent services that ensure the protection of employees and property from explosion risk in hazardous areas – this is achieved through the provision of training and ensuring that equipment intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres is correctly certified according to ATEX and IECEx international classifications by a accredited Notified Body.

Part 4

IECEx competence certification from SGS – a qualification for personnel in organisations offering services in explosive atmospheres.

It is well recognised that people are the weakest link in any safety chain. The purpose of the internationally recognised IECEx Personnel Competence Certification Scheme is to add strength to your safety chain in respect of those individuals working in and around hazardous areas.

SGS is recognised as being at the forefront of international product certification within the IECEx Equipment Certification Scheme, and the company is now well established as a leader in the newer IECEx Personnel Competence Certification Scheme.

Unlike many other schemes which are based purely on training, the IECEx scheme focuses on what an individual is capable of doing sometime after their training has been put to use in the workplace. In contrast, an examination directly at the end of a training course tests only short-term memory, rather than acquired ability.

By setting a number of pre-requisites before each examination can be attempted, you can be confident that a pass in the examination is meaningful.

The scheme is based on 11 units that cover most of the activities personnel may be required to carry out as part of the design, installation, commissioning, inspection and maintenance of such plants.


ATEX & IECEx Certification | hazardous area equipment certification from SGS meets the legal requirements for products used in explosive atmospheres.

In short form, the IECEx units are:

  • Ex 000 – Basic Knowledge and Awareness to Enter an Explosive Area Site
  • Ex 001 – Application of Basic Principles of Protection (supporting the other units)
  • Ex 002 – Performance of Area Classification
  • Ex 003 – Installation of Equipment and Wiring Systems
  • Ex 004 – Maintenance of Equipment
  • Ex 005 – Overhaul and Repair of Equipment
  • Ex 006 – Testing of Installations and Equipment
  • Ex 007 – Performance of Visual and Close Inspections
  • Ex 008 – Performance of Detailed Inspections
  • Ex 009 – Design of Electrical Installations in Hazardous Atmospheres
  • Ex 010 – Performance of Audit Inspections


IECEx Ex000 is a certificate of Basic Knowledge and based only on a test. This will indicate whether the participant has basic knowledge, when they need not demonstrate specific competence in the Ex field.

Units Ex 003 to Ex 008 require practical examinations on hardware, in addition to the written examinations that apply for all units. The practical examinations are currently held at our examination centres in the UK and Singapore. There is more flexibility in where the written examinations can take place.

Contact us today for more information and to prove the competence of your personnel.


Based in Buxton, Derbyshire, SGS Baseefa’s staff has over 300 years’ experience of Ex equipment between them and is a major contributor to developing the standards for Ex equipment, at UK, European and international level. In the UK, the IECEx CoPC is a useful addition to those already trained within the CompEx Scheme.


SGS Baseefa

Research work into explosions in hazardous atmospheres has been carried out at our Buxton site since the 1920s. SGS Baseefa is now one of the largest organisations in the world with a laboratory dedicated to certification in this area and a world leader in the field.

In Europe, SGS Baseefa is one of the most recognised Notified Bodies for issuing the certification required by the European ATEX Directive. We are at the forefront of international product certification within the IECEx Equipment Certification Scheme, having issued more certificates in this field than any other certification body in the world.

Beyond certification we also provide an accessible yet authoritative source of expertise in many related areas. With extensive experience and knowledge of the application of industry standards in many areas we actively participate in committees formulating standards both at the European and international levels.

Through our global network we can offer a truly worldwide service to you, wherever you may be, providing documentation to support your sales throughout the world and to give your customers confidence in the products you sell.

Further Reading


Thorne & Derrick are leaders in the development and distribution of Product Innovations that deliver significant improvements to clients plant, people and operational safety in the explosive atmosphere industries.

Your proactive problem solvers experienced in succession planning for the replacement of obsolete, non-conformant and legacy equipment in hazardous areas.

Your first-choice provider of innovative and competitive solutions to ensure ATEX & IECEx Compliance for Hazardous Area Electrical, HVAC & Process Instrumentation Equipment to UK and international projects.

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Experts In Equipment for Explosive Atmospheres & Hazardous Area Locations

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Servicing Explosive Atmosphere Industries Since 1985.

Servicing Explosive Atmosphere Industries Since 1985.