Audit checklists have proven their usefulness in the management system, document control, and compliance aspects of a company. They make sure that the processes in all departments, including the administration department, production department, customer service, and many others, are inspected thoroughly. Such documents can take form in many variations, depending on what needed to be scrutinized.
Good examples of these are a retail store’s financial audit checklist, a construction project’s quality audit checklist, and company payroll’s HR audit checklist. But even with so many alternative forms, they all follow the ISO (International Organization for Standardization) standards. To find out more of the other audit checklist variants, then you better take a peek on our Free 15+ Sample Audit Checklist Examples in PDF, Microsoft Word, Google Docs, and Apple Pages file formats.
An audit checklist is an important tool in scheming and executing an inspection of a company’s particular business operation. Ray Tricker cited in the second edition of his book entitled ISO 9001: 2000 Audit Procedures the many advantages of such a document. Some of them are its sampling and time management functions, a reference for future audits, and a guide for an orderly inspection process. Therefore, if your organization is currently executing your audit strategic plan on a specific operation, then an audit checklist is the perfect tool an auditor should consider carrying around.
ISO 9001 is a standard requirement that is internationally recognized as a good reference by many companies for their quality management systems (QMS). It is made by the International Organization of Standardization (ISO), which proved its commitment to giving archetypes in auditing. The standard prerequisite aids businesses in planning, creating, and performing their customer analysis and customer satisfaction surveys. To give you a clearer picture, a QMS that observes ISO 9001 specifications concisely details how an organization can satisfy customer needs, advances the concept of gradual enhancement, and demands organizations to describe the goals and objectives for both.
Many people misunderstood checklists in different ways. First, they thought that they are not as important as other documents. Second, they believe that such documents are hardly a challenge to create. Truth be told, it is the other way around. You can take the home inspection checklist and evaluation checklist as examples. If you are worried not to create one the right way, then don’t because we have provided you with guidelines below that will surely help you produce an audit checklist effectively and efficiently.
If you are given the task to create something that you don’t know of, then the very first thing you must do is make yourself do qualitative research. An intensive might be good, but it is not recommendable. Making yourself understand the very purpose of creating an audit checklist gives you a hint on how to make the succeeding steps.
Going back to your task checklist, start your composition by setting the main subject of your planned audit. Accompany the main subject of your checklist with a focus statement to make it act as a reminder of what your objectives are.
In a project outline, you create heads and subheads. This is so it is easier for you to mentally grasp regarding what to create and search about. In other words, it sets you up for efficient technical writing. And, you should apply the same principle when making a checklist.
Setting the header and subheads will surely give you an overview of the things that you have to take into account. However, adding brief descriptions of them would be so much better. If you try to look at website headers and blog headers, their description introduces matters quite effectively to readers. So, why not incorporate such a description to your checklist and for your own benefit.
Up next is the listing of your audit topics. These topics can be made in the form of strategic planning questionnaires, titles, or phrasal descriptions. These descriptions will pave the way for easier writing of an inspection report. Creating boxes on every item’s side is not necessary but adopted by many.
As you conclude your checklist, make sure to check if there are any errors. If that is the case, then correct them immediately. Also, ask your fellow auditors if they have more items to add. These will make your process document more complete. Once done, ensure to add a double in your data inventory for safekeeping.
An audit checklist must include indicators, situations, reasons, out-turns, and corrective action plans.
According to Investopedia, there are three types of audits. These include external audits, internal audits, and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) audits. External audit refers to audit processes that are performed by parties outside the companies. The exact opposite best describes internal audits. IRS audits, on the other hand, is a consecutive inspection regarding taxpayers’ transactions.
Getting your company ISO certified is easy. First, you have to develop your company’s quality management system according to ISO standards. Second, implement your system to employees. Third, test if your QMS is effective. Lastly, choose ISO as your auditing body and submit your QMS documentation. Prepare for a visit afterward.
The common saying, “quality is better than quantity,” best applies not just for manufacturing companies but also for those who provide services. For many years, successful producers maintained good relationships with their consumers not because they produce adequate amounts of goods or services, but because of the satisfying result consumers get after availing. Through auditors who make use of effective tools, like checklists, for their quality management plan, these good relationships continue to prosper. Needless to say, creating and leveraging them should be practiced habitually.