What is an ISO 9001 Audit?
An audit is an independent and documented process that gathers facts and evidence that an organisation is compliant to the ISO 9001 standard at the time of the audit.
It can help you monitor the effectiveness of your Management System, ensure your procedures are fit for purpose and minimise risk. It also aids continual improvement which is a key aspect of ISO 9001.
ISO 9001 Auditing Process
Audit process reviews compliance
ISO 9001 certificate granted
Regular internal audits at planned intervals
Annual external audits to ensure compliance is maintained
After being presented with your ISO 9001 certificate, you will be required to undertake regular internal audits at planned intervals. In addition, you will also have an annual external audit conducted by one of our assessors to ensure you are compliant with the Standard. These audits are required throughout the term of your ISO certification.
Internal ISO 9001 Audits
Internal auditors are in-house representatives who are responsible for carrying out regular reviews of the organisation’s Quality Management System and managing the audit schedule. Ideally, they should be independent from the area they are auditing, which is why we recommend having more than one internal auditor. It’s their job to carry out an objective, formal and impartial ISO 9001 audit by assessing how things should be done and how the company matches this ethos, whilst looking for ways to improve.
This can be achieved with a checklist so that each audit is consistent, recorded for future review and repeated regularly. Over time you’ll see how well the company has progressed in reaching these targets.
External ISO 9001 Audits
An external audit is carried out by an experienced and professional auditor who is independent of the organisation. Their expertise and auditing skills across the board will assist in helping you check that all the correct processes are in place and that the company is meeting high standards for effective quality management when following best practice policies. In addition, they will help you identify opportunities for improvement to ensure your management system continues to flourish.
At ISO QSL, we also operate an auditor rotation policy whereby we alternate who is carrying out your external audits to ensure the advice remains unbiased. We believe this allows us the opportunity to provide you with the best support and advice, ensuring you always receive a wide range of expertise.
Learn More About ISO 9001
Each and every ISO Management System has individual features that help you strive as a company. ISO QSL are experts in carrying out external audits and assisting with the ISO certification process.
When an ISO 9001 auditor is evaluating a company’s performance and and processes, a wide range of factors are considered to determine whether the requirements are being met.
Through this thorough review, the auditor examines the company’s compliance across different categories, including performance, leadership, operations, planning, and improvement.
While the ISO 9001 requirements do not specify exact intervals for internal audits, it’s important to consider a variety of factors when planning your audit schedule. The frequency of internal audits may depend on the complexity of the processes involved, as well as their level of maturity.
For instance, well-established processes may require less frequent auditing, perhaps only annually, whereas new or complex processes may need to be audited more frequently, such as quarterly or even monthly. By tailoring your internal audit schedule to the specific needs of your organisation, you can ensure that your management system remains effective and compliant with ISO 9001 standards.