There are two main categories of audits: internal and external. Audits are a key component for becoming ISO certified and you must have internal auditors, and pass the 2-stage registrar audit by an external party in order to become ISO certified. Below we will break down the different ways audits can be conducted and discuss internal, external and certification audits.
The three ways audits can be conducted are:
- On-site audits are performed in full days. The number of days needed for an audit depends on several factors including size, complexity, risk, and nature of an organization. The International Accreditation Forum (IAF) has provided guidelines for registrars to calculate audit time.
- Remote audits may be performed via web meetings, teleconferencing or electronic verification of processes. Remote audits are less common and typically not as effective as on-site audits.
- Self-audits do not always mean an internal audit. A self-audit can be requested of your customer to eliminate the need for them to use their resources and still offer some assurance that you are meeting requirements..
Step 1: Internal Audit Step 2: External Audit Step 3: Certification Audit
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You can expect that your auditor will be looking to see that you meet these requirements just the same as they will be confirming you meet all the other requirements. This is why it is important when you are beginning your journey towards ISO certification that you have a gap analysis performed to identify any potential non conformity you may have in these areas so that you can address these gaps before your certification audit..