New standard for consumer warranties keeps everyone in the supply chain on the same page

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Por Clare Naden
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The rise in e-commerce and globalization has revolutionized retail trade – for both the good and otherwise of the consumer. However, more choice doesn’t always equate to better quality. A new International Standard for consumer warranties will help to protect every player in the supply chain.

With an estimated USD 20 trillion worth of merchandise exported around the world each year, there is no denying we live in a globalized economy. But while digitalization and globalization bring with it unending choice for consumers, not all buyers get a good deal. Faulty goods or the unsatisfactory performance of products are the risk one takes.

Now, a new International Standard aims to reduce the likelihood of bad surprises for consumers and protect manufacturers and suppliers at the same time, enhancing confidence in all aspects of the deal.

ISO 22059, Guidelines on consumer warranties/guarantees, specifies what is required for a sound warranty or guarantee that will meet the reasonable expectations of consumers. It includes stating exactly what is covered and not covered, the time frame of coverage and the manufacturer or supplier’s expectations of consumers. It also features the inclusion of remedial action should the product fail.

Dr Rahmah Ismail, Chair of the ISO committee of experts that developed the standard, said consumer protection levels vary greatly across the world, but this standard ensures an acceptable minimum for all.

“Being developed and internationally agreed by experts involved in both consumer and manufacturer rights, ISO 22059 will help both buyer and supplier understand their role in a successful transaction. It captures best practices from around the world, underlining both the consumers’ and manufacturers’ roles and responsibilities,” she said.

“This will in turn increase consumer confidence – a win-win deal for all.”

ISO 22059 was developed by ISO project committee ISO/PC 303, Guidelines on consumer warranties and guarantees, the secretariat of which is held by DSM, ISO’s member for Malaysia. It is available for purchase from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store.

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