Periodic audits help a company determine if it’s hitting the mark on quality management. Standards of quality management, based on government regulations, international guidelines and a company’s own protocols, are the critical benchmarks for quality audit reports. Auditors rely on these standards to judge the effectiveness of a company’s quality assurance program. The audit reports alert managers to company operations that are not aligned to prevailing standards and need to be revised.
- Skill level:
Design a cover page. Identify the report’s title, author, date of completion and the company under audit.
Write an executive summary for reports over 15 pages. Provide the dates when the audit was conducted. Give background information on the subject so readers understand the audit’s purpose. For example, the report might discuss new regulations for equipment that manufactures vaccines. The summary should state when the original standards became effective, identify their shortcomings and then explain how the new standards differ.
Draft an introduction that explains the auditors’ objectives and briefly summarises key findings. For example, “The main objective of the A & E Company’s internal quality control audit was to present information on the current manufacturing processes of vaccines to determine how new federal guidelines will impact the vaccines’ effectiveness. The most significant finding was that the company must invest in new centrifuges.”
Provide a section on “Terminology.” Define key terms used in the report. Identify programs, agencies or organisations mentioned. For example, if the report mentions the NAHB, explain this as a reference to the National Association of Home Builders, a trade organisation started in 1942.
Discuss the company’s current quality assurance procedures in a section called “Current Quality Assurance System,” explaining their objectives and effectiveness.
Create a section for “Audit Plan.” Identify auditors and their qualifications. List the documents examined and people interviewed.
Continue describing the audit plan by detailing its process. Use flowcharts to identify steps the auditors followed. For example, a flowchart might have auditors first convening a meeting, then identifying audit criteria and then assigning responsibilities and beginning a document review.
Explain how auditors determined which documents to examine and people to interview. Identify system checks during the process. For example, state whether documents tagged for review had to be approved by a peer group.
Prepare a "Table of Audit Processes." List actions taken by auditors, the time frame, any standard forms completed and recommendations made. For example, the report might say auditors examined human resources documents from January through June, then completed "Human Resources Document Audit Forms" and concluded that staff should become more efficient when retrieving documents.
Finish with a section for “Recommendations.” Suggest how operations might be improved to comply with standards. For example, the report might conclude that operations employees must spend more time in safety training in order to comply with federal guidelines.
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