#FlattenTheCurve with Digital Certification Audits
With the current National ‘Lockdown’ in full swing for South Africa, Wynleigh International Certification Services has adopted a ‘new normal’.
Computer Assisted Auditing Techniques (“CAAT”)
We’ve achieved this by invoking the requirements of IAF MD 4:2008, which allows for Computer Assisted Auditing Techniques (“CAAT”) for Certification of Management Systems (Ref https://www.iaf.nu/articles/Mandatory_Documents_/38). IAF ID 3 requires that management of extraordinary events and circumstances affecting Certification Bodies and Certified Organisations is addressed and that business interruption is adequately addressed.(Ref. https://www.iaf.nu/upFiles/IAFID32011_Management_of_Extraordinary_Events_or_Circumstances.pdf ).
“CAAT” is only possible where auditees have access to both their audit records and the internet.
Although not all auditees are in favour of this approach, I can positively assure all clients that it isn’t at all difficult. Having personally participated in a global audit in this way, I found it incredibly easy and effective.
CAAT auditing allows for **“teleconferencing, web meetings, interactive web-based communications and remote electronic access to the management system documentation and/or management system processes”.
How can WICS make CAAT work for your organisation?
A number of our clients are already warming-up to this method of auditing. At least one has requested that their audit be brought forward to take place during the National Lockdown period, in order to minimise disruption to their operations. They have prepared by ensuring records are all remotely accessible and that connectivity will not compromise the process.
Hard copies of the auditee’s documentation can be shared through a live video stream, via a mobile phone camera, when necessary.
Planning includes determination and quantification of risk, confirmation of the practical considerations and ensuring the availability of relevant personnel needed to respond to questions.
This method of auditing is not nearly as complicated as it at first appears. It does, however, mean that the audit plan must be strictly adhered to and that each person interviewed must have access to the internet.
**IAF Mandatory Document for the use of Computer Assisted Auditing Techniques (“CAAT”) for Accredited Certification of Management Systems, Issue 1 (IAF MD 4:2008)