The Southern African Auditor and Training Certification Authority (SAATCA) came into existence in 1986 in response to the need for a framework under which quality management systems could be audited as a result of the introduction of Quality Management Systems standards, as far back as SABS 0157 in 1979.
In 1986, in response to this need, the South African Committee for the Certification of Quality Systems Auditors (SACCQA) was formed to implement, administer and control a scheme for the certification of quality management system Auditors and Lead Auditors. The first examination for Quality System Auditors was held on 19 June 1987.
Due to the interest shown in SACCQA by neighboring and other African countries such as Zimbabwe, Zambia and Kenya, it was decided in 1992 to change the organization’s name to the Southern African Council for the Certification of Quality System Auditors.
Other major events that have taken place since 1992 include:
- The signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with twelve other countries to establish the International Auditor and Training Course Association (IATCA);
- Registration of SACCQA as a Section 21 company and the appointment of a Registrar in 1996;
- The extension of the auditor registration scheme to include other disciplines environmental management system, health and safety management system, etc.;
- The joining of the Southern African Association of Certification Bodies (SAACB) in 2000;
- Successful accreditation to ISO 17024 (Conformity assessment – General Requirements for Bodies Operating Certification of Persons) by SANAS in October 2002;
- Name change to The Southern African Auditor and Training Certification Authority with the acronym SAATCA in November 2011;
- Gaining recognition by the Department of Trade and industry (DTI) in 2012 for the importance of the work of SAATCA in South Africa as well as the SADC region, as an important stakeholder in the conformity assessment arena through its responsibility to register Auditors.