​​IEEE standards have long been relied on by cooperatives and consulting engineers to specify equipment, and to design, construct and operate systems. Approximately 10 years ago, IEEE created a new standards development method that allows companies to develop standards through a more limited, often accelerated process. These “IEEE entity standards" risk favoring the participants' corporate interests, rather than those of the end users, and sometimes conflict with existing IEEE and other standards applying to the industry in North America. It is often challenging but very important to differentiate between the standards. This advisory explains the difference and how cooperatives can determine which standards are involved in their work.