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International Safety Management certification

To facilitate effective operation of ships and ensure ongoing compliance with international standards, DNV offers International Safety Management (ISM) certification.

For ships in international trade, ISM certification is mandatory, and companies must have a Safety Management System (SMS) and a Document of Compliance (DOC) attesting SMS effectiveness.

DNV is authorized to perform audits and issue ISM, ISPS and MLC certificates on behalf of more than 100 flag states. We also provide accredited Seamless Services (ISM with ISO 9001, 14001, 45001 and/or 50001).

Our management system services are delivered by our 650 auditors worldwide. With our commitment to quick decision-making and fast processing times, we work together with you to ensure effective processes for your management systems certification needs.

Our audit approach is to focus on what matters and assess the effectiveness of the safety management systems in meeting the objectives of the code(s), rather than looking for conformity with details.

The DNV approach to International Safety Management (ISM) certification

Prior to the company audit, our auditor will discuss focus areas with you and determine which performance indicators to use to support you in improving operations and reaching management system goals.

With focus areas agreed in advance, audits are more effective. For shipboard audits, the combined certification approach is employed, which allows us to leverage overlaps between requirements of various certification schemes.

On completion of audits, you will receive a report with the results and any findings. We will also provide information on areas for improvement and positive indications.

Our audits don’t just verify compliance – they also focus on aspects that are important for you.

Profit from more effective management systems with DNV’s ISM certification:

  • Time-effective audits designed for your company and tailored to your needs
  • Assessment of Safety Management System (SMS) effectiveness in handling requirements in and meeting objectives of the codes
  • Support using SMS to optimize operations and reach desired results
  • Combined audits which utilize overlapping requirements in ISM, ISPS and MLC (and ISO standards) for seamless and time and cost-efficient auditing
  • Data-smart audits providing insight into your performance and helping you to proactively identify improvement opportunities, optimize operations and manage risk
  • Effective solutions due to comprehensive involvement on all management systems – both in the office and on the ships
  • Prompt and effective support facilitated with our in-depth knowledge of flag state requirements and extensive cooperation with flag state administrations

For more information on our approach to certification visit Fit for Purpose

Related links


ISM cyber security

Visit our related ISM cyber security website


On-demand webinar: Cyber security in the maritime industry – the ISM Code as another driver (March, 2020)

Request access to the webinar recording and presentation


Transfer of Management Systems

Download our Flyer


DNV Fit for Purpose

Download our flyer


On-demand webinar: Optimizing ship operations through maritime management systems

Request access to the webinar recording and presentation

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