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Preparation for Supplier Audit

Discussion in 'ISO 19011 - Auditing Management Systems Guidelines' started by JoanneJ, Mar 23, 2018.

  1. JoanneJ

    JoanneJ New Member

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    As a business we are due to be audited by one of our customers. I have been tasked to lead this by my employer. I have never led anything like this only ever conducted Internal Audits to QMS. I am looking for best advice in preparing for this? TIA....
     
  2. hogheavenfarm

    hogheavenfarm Well-Known Member

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    I have been through several of these. Generally the customer will supply you with a pre audit checklist and a schedule ahead of time, use this as the framework for your preparation. I usually grab some key people (production manager, HR, purchasing, engineering, etc.) and set up a meeting once per week to prepare. Then I supply a copy of the checklist and we go over how each part affects each person, and what they need to be aware of. In essence, we basically check the entire QMS system and the interaction with each function. We highlight any parts that internal audits show as weak (this is a great time for education and improvement), and we concentrate on the weak areas. I also found it helpful to keep a separate binder with examples of each item that may come up, so we have quick access to documentation and evidence of compliance. For instance I keep an old copy of a purchase order (filled out) and a blank PO form, showing a. that we use it, and b. how we use it. Customer auditors are a bit different than certification auditors in that they are seeing things from their own companies perspective, and they may focus more on things like record retention, calibration status, and care of customer property rather than whether you have a risk register of not. Put yourself in the same position auditing one of your suppliers, and you will have a good idea of what they will be expecting to see.
     
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  3. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Are you familiar with the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams? "Don't Panic". "Expect the Unexpected". Both come to mind...

    Ask your customer for their plan. You need to know how they intend to schedule their day(s) with you to arrange for key personnel to talk them through whatever they want to see. Also, ask them for the scope and audit criteria. If they are any good, they will provide that. If they don't: Don't Panic...
     
  4. JoanneJ

    JoanneJ New Member

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    Thank you very much, going by your advice in the first 5 lines, I'm actual going in the right direction. I feel i should know all this and i probably do as I have a a good knowledge of the process I have just never led it. Again thank you for these pointers and I'm sure i will be back again at some point to find out more.
     
  5. JoanneJ

    JoanneJ New Member

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    Thanks Andy, I have already done this. I will email again before end of play today to get one over as due to be audited end of next week. As said in previous reply post, I am familiar maybe just lacking confidence. As recently started this job so a lot thrown at me and just a little it out of the comfort zone.
     
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  6. Andy Nichols

    Andy Nichols Moderator Staff Member

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    Make sure you lay on plenty of breakfast goodies and a big lunch! You'll do just fine! ;)
     
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  7. Golfman25

    Golfman25 Well-Known Member

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    Yep.

    If you are already certified to a standard, you have very little to worry about. Assuming you don't have many rejections and other issues, many customer audits are more "meet and greet" than we are looking to ding and punish you. If you find out what their plan is prior to the audit, you're golden. And most customers will focus on themselves, not other things. They want to know how you handle their stuff. Good luck.
     
  8. tony s

    tony s Well-Known Member

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    Though your employer assigned to you the responsibility to deal with the customer auditor(s), your employer should be the one to "run the show". Your organization should make your customer feel that your top management is committed to satisfy their needs and expectations.
     
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  9. JoanneJ

    JoanneJ New Member

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    Hi Tony,

    yeah i made sure it was led by the appropriate person. All went well with audit and pleased with the outcome. As always though room to improve.
     
    Atul Khandekar likes this.

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