As we are all aware, the life of an auditor is no glamorous job. My work predominantly as a lead auditor has been in going to client sites, performing audits and generating reports. The reports are mostly generated on word / excel and usually take at least half a day to complete.
Recently, while reading a blog post, I discovered iComplied – the mobile audit platform. Based on my experience with iComplied I am writing this post for those interested in audits and using technology to their advantage.
A bit of a background about me – I am a Lead Auditor for ISO 9001, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001, SMETA, TAPA, CT-PAT and various other schemes. My struggle through the years as a sub-contracted auditor has been to find SMART tools to make the job easier for both the auditor and the client. Most of my clients use compliance as a weapon to enhance the quality of their products and improve processes. In my opinion, the data generated from these audits is not used very efficiently or rather there is no data except for audit reports to verify the information. Clients need to dig through word documents / excel sheets to compare previous audits results which are quite cumbersome.
Real-time data and immediate reporting are the key aspects of an auditing tool which needs to be automated and available to management for key decision making. iCompled is a breath of fresh air as it offers real- time data and immediate reporting which are key aspects of an auditing tool.
The platform is a complete lifecycle – it helps manage CARs, documents, risk as well as provides audit checklist for internal compliance. As a consultant / auditor I’ve been able to engage my client on the platform and manage all close outs directly on the platform.
For an auditor, evidence is critical to raising non-conformances and delivering the message accurately. During a TAPA audit in Melbourne recently, my aim was to deliver a concise message to the auditee on some of the elements that were missing and also on areas than need to be addressed. I took the approach of using ‘photo evidence’ as part of my audit and delivering the message. ‘Photo evidence’ is a powerful tool as it instantly provides a complete picture of the good and the bad. It leaves no room for debate between the auditee and Senior Management.
It is essentially the best way of capturing evidence and maintaining records for future audits.
From an organisation perspective, having information to put on a board level discussion goes a long way in gaining management commitment and resources for maintaining quality, safety and security. Most organisations struggle in presenting trends, analysis and data which compels investment and focus on key facets of improving customer service, product and efficient processes.
Technology is gaining momentum! Making the most of simple checklists, easy to use features, photo evidence and moving away from paper based system is the way to go. Photos form part of responses as well as evidence which can be closed off site if deemed appropriate by the auditor.
These days 1 in 3 workers have company provided mobile phones and are not in front of computers, people have dual roles and are on the go – having a mobile app gives you a distinct advantage. Gone are the days when you have to wait until you get back to your desk to prepare reports and write up CARs. It can all be done with a click of a button.
For more information please feel free to contact me or visit www.icomplied.com