Aegis extends this brief regulatory alert:
The use of remote or virtual auditing has been used by limited companies and organizations over the past few years. However, with the emergence and impact of Covid-19, this technique has become an important tool, especially for expansive ISO Management audits. The major audit providers are currently using remote auditing for the surveillance, certification, and recertification audits required for ISO registration. The growth of interactive communication technology (ICT) has enabled this expansion by providing needed real-time remote evaluation tools, such as smart phones, laptops, video cameras, wearable technology and artificial intelligence, and drones.
Reasons cited for remote auditing are mainly concerns for the security and safety of staff (auditors and auditees), travel bans, and potentially limited physical access to sites. Others cited include keeping businesses up and running, reduction of auditor and/or facility representative travel time and related expenses, and greater auditee participation in audits with the ability for process input including access to experts/company stakeholders who can participate from other locations.
As with current on-site audits, the auditor follows a somewhat standard protocol such as:
Additionally, the auditor will need to address the following prior to the audit.
Most of the above information would also be important for an in-person audit. The difference may be the pre-planning. If you would like assistance with virtual auditing, please contact Sandy Morse here at firstname.lastname@example.org.