In a fast-paced economy, technological advances and more stringent demands have made global quality standards harder to achieve. Whatever product or process that is acceptable today might not be up to standard in a few years. To remain competitive, companies need to consistently look into their activities to make sure they deliver quality products that offer customer satisfaction.
Internal quality audits are independent checks and tests done from within an organization to measure the effectiveness of its quality management system. Through these audits, an organization is able to identify key areas of improvement. The corrective actions that take place after an audit resolve to increase efficiency and overall quality within the organization.
Continuous improvement is the main objective of internal quality audits. Through these evaluations, an organization is able to identify its strengths and weaknesses. Productivity and efficiency can be significantly improved by following a quality management system to the letter. An added benefit is a reduction in costs, wastes, and errors.
Internal audits also prepare an organization for any surprise inspections that can be performed by customers or the government. This gives employees the confidence to show their best even under pressure. For companies transacting in international markets, these audits legitimize their commitment to quality standards by showing that they can comply with any prerequisites that are set for multinational companies.
Internal quality auditing is a requirement for organizations applying for or maintaining a quality standard certification. An example of this is the application for any of the ISO 9000 family of standards. Before an organization is audited by an external certification body, internal audits need to be passed to ensure that the organization complies with the international quality standards. After the certification, internal audits are continued to maintain the organization’s quality standing.
Internal auditing is enhanced by the implementation of a document control system. Documentation control refers to the management of information created within an organization. By having this control measure, documents can be easily stored, secured, retrieved, and distributed. The system also facilitates data backup and recovery in case of security breach or disasters. A documentation control system can also be subjected to quality audit.
An effective internal audit can only be carried out by identifying key areas of concern and by following a comprehensive audit plan. This implies training all managers and employees on the provisions of the company’s quality management system and how it is going to be implemented in all areas of operation. You can get more information on internal quality auditing on qualitydigest.com.
Why Organizations Need Internal Quality Auditing