Incorporated in 1964, BCG is an independent, not-for-profit certifying body that is nationally and internationally recognized. BCG promotes ethics and standards through its certification program and publications. These publications include Genealogy Standards; The BCG Application Guide; OnBoard, its newsletter; and SpringBoard, its blog. BCG also promotes ethics and standards through skillbuilding lectures at national conferences, through seminars, and through webinars.

Certification results from evaluation of work samples in a portfolio submission. For each certification category, BCG requires different materials. Applicants are evaluated on standards for documenting, standards for researching, and standards for writing. Three to four evaluators independently assess each application. Certification says a practitioner has met the rigorous standards for knowledge and competence of the field.