By Mark Hamon, Risk Management Training and Safety Consultant Sydney.
“99 percent of success is built on failure.” — Charles Kettering
Have you ever considered an audit like a health check-up of your business, to identify and put right what might be a hidden risk or going wrong in your business?
All business owners need to make sure they manage their risk, customer needs, and litigation and business activities. Do you really know if they are operating efficiently or leaving you at risk? Auditors will never assume, their role is to find the facts (objective evidence).
For an auditor the 3 main areas they focus on is management commitment, quality / business objectives and customer satisfaction.
An internal audit will help you understand the following:
- Is your employees doing what your processes, policies and procedures say they are meant to be doing? If not an audit can determine areas of improvement.
- Are your processes, policies and procedure, out dated or obsolete and need to be changed? If something goes wrong how do you know you won’t be held liable?
Areas of risk to your business can be:
Commercial/ legal issues, management activities/controls, economic circumstances, technological issues, human behaviour, natural events, political issues and individual events.
Impact issues from risk can include:
Organisational behaviour, asset / resources base, direct and indirect costs, people, performance, community issues, environment, intangibles (e.g. good will, quality of life, reputation), revenue and entitlements.
So what evidence or bench marking can be used during an audit?
- Customer requirements including contracts, orders, specifications and briefs
· Strategic business plans and project management plans
· Legislation and regulations e.g. business law, safety law.
· National and international standards e.g. Safety, Quality, Risk, HACCP, IT Security, BCM, Risk Management.
· International or domestic conventions e.g. World Health Organisation
· Industry codes of practice e.g. specific to your industry
· Company policies and procedures
· Work instructions
Internal Auditors are trained in a methodology of auditing, including how to plan, prepare, lead and complete an audit and trained to international professional recognition e.g. QSA International.
If you have any questions then get on the phone (obligation free) and contact KONA Group’s Risk Management Training Specialist Mark Hamon at info@KONA.com.au or call 1300 611 288 and you can discuss your internal business audit and improvement needs.