Emancipation not only gave women the right to vote, but especially brought an overall change in thinking. Women began to believe more in their abilities and gradually became involved in professions that are traditionally considered as suitable for men. Today, no one demur at woman programmer, judge or top doctor (although the first Czech doctor of medicine graduated only in 1902!).
“We have therefore requested certification for all our drawer types and models, including the chests – there are 252 of them,” explained Robert Toupalik, POLAK CZ export manager.
Another reason for this decision was the new webpage system, where the customer can configure exactly how their new furniture will look. This feature is used by as many as 80 percent of customers. This means they don’t have to spend time looking up whether the configuration they have chosen will have a certificate – they will all have one.
This certificate is essential, particularly on the German market, in order to succeed in tenders announced by state organisations, for example. By using a certificate the company commits itself to fulfilling several conditions. These include annual inspections at the company's premises, the fact that the manufactured product is identical to the one that has been certified, payment of the management fee in the GS database, checks on the use of the GS mark, and consent to random inspections, while GS-marked products must comply with the requirements of the Electromagnetic Compatibility (EMC) Directive.
The certification process took approximately six months.
“I made the most of the experience and contacts of my colleagues, so I knew who to turn to. All the tests were carried out in the laboratory in Hamburg,” explains Robert Toupalik.
The entire product had to be described in detail and a sample had to be supplied, determined by the laboratory from the materials it was provided with. This was relatively complex and heavy configured furniture. They took the sample to Hamburg and the laboratory technicians subjected it to a thorough series of tests over several months. For example, they tested opening and closing the drawers, 40,000 times. They also tested the tilt, centre of gravity, and the load capacity of the individual drawers. They also checked that the latch works, preventing other drawers from opening when drawer is opened - which could cause the set to topple over.
The certificate is valid for a limited period; the products will be tested again after it expires. The testers focus particularly on the sustainability and repeatability of the production process, and the company was highly rated on this aspect. In the audit of technologies and production processes they proved that in five years they will be able to produce exactly the same products that they make today. The fact that production is highly automated means that the technological process is always the same.
POLAK CZ is planning to go further in terms of certification, rather than leaving it at chests of drawers.