Part 7 – Conducting Internal Audits within your organisation
Regular internal audits of the quality management system (QMS) will make sure it does what it is intended to do for your organisation. How often you want to do internal audits will depend on your individual organisation, but you should aim for a minimum of once a year, and ideally more often.
It is difficult to audit your own work as you would be unlikely to see it objectively, so an internal auditor where possible should be someone who hasn’t worked closely with the system.
You should plan your internal audit programme, so that you know exactly what you will do, when you will do it., who you need to speak to and what documents you will want to see. This helps an audit to run smoothly without taking too much time away from the work place.
Think about the different areas of your organisation that you will need to include in your audit. List who is responsible for each area and who you will you need to speak to for each area and make an appointment with them. Make sure they know what you will be asking them, and what documents you will want to see. It is usual to see a sample of documents as evidence rather than all the documents. Remember to make a note of the documents you have seen.
This interview should be as relaxed as you can make it as people can feel stressed if they think you are looking to judge or criticise them. You can explain that what you are doing is looking at how wee the QMS works.
The internal audit should be documented and shared with management. Any problems found should be accompanied by corrective actions on the report, and these should be put into place as soon as possible.
If you’re interested in learning a bit more about the standard and how it can fit into your organisation, check out the free ISO 9001 Awareness course provided by our colleagues over at Lorators.
Or if you think you’re ready to find out more about implementing a Quality Management System to the requirements of ISO 9001, our experienced consultants are ready to help.
If you have any questions or inquiries, please contact us here.