Internal audits are important – there is no denying it. Whilst you can get an independent person in to carry out your company’s internal audit, many businesses are tempted to do them in house – if they have a member of staff with the appropriate experience, of course. However, the main role of an internal audit is to provide your company with independent assurance that your risk management, governance and all internal control processes are operating in an effective manner.
What does an internal auditor do?
When it comes to internal audits, there is no ‘one size fits all’ timescale. Depending on the size of the company and the complexity of its operations, an audit can take as short a time as one day – but this depends on how many standards are being measured and whether they are integrated.
A quality audit will usually involve a review of the design and operation process within the business. The auditor will also take a performance evaluation, a review of the minutes of management meetings, analysis of how the quality process reviews customer satisfaction, and will look at how the business monitors the performance of its external providers, such as sub-contractors and key suppliers. All these have an impact on the service a company can offer its clients, which is why these ‘external’ factors are included in the internal audit.
Whilst an internal audit is not a blaming exercise, it is also essential that an auditor gains a picture of what happens when things do go wrong – something that happens in every business from time to time. An independent auditor will look at non-conformances, to see what has not gone to plan and what the business has put in place to correct the non-conformance and what steps have been taken to ensure this doesn’t happen in future. Staff training records and competency skills will also be measured.
The businesses objectives and targets will be analysed, in order to see that the company is on track to meet any objectives or targets. The auditor will also look at whether or not document control is effective.
Upon completion of the audit, you will receive a detailed report documenting the auditor’s findings complete with suggestions on how to improve the system.
So why an independent auditor?
The nature of the auditing process means examining all the appropriate aspects of a company’s work in detail and that means looking at the work of individuals. When you work with someone all the time, no matter how hard you try, it can be incredibly difficult to be impartial.
We can help
Whether as part of a re-certification process for ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015 or for any other ISO standard, Synergos can help. With extensive experience conducting audits across many different industries, you can be sure of a thorough, professional and independent audit of your process and systems that you can count on. Simply call today on 01484 817 444 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to get a clear and independent picture of your business from the outside in.