Crucial business functions such as compliance audits must be planned and executed with absolute precision and integrity. A keystone to conducting effective audits is selecting the right auditor, with the right skills and experience, to apply their knowledge and understanding of the processes they are auditing. Businesses that spend the time and effort in selecting the most appropriate auditor for an audit have half their battle won in ensuring the most effective audits and return on investment.
Let’s have a closer look at the importance of choosing the right auditor and how to make the best selection.
What Does an Auditor Do?
The general perception about auditors is that they carry out the mundane task of analyzing the business processes against regulatory guidelines and ticking their checklists. However when we look at the audit process more closely, we realize that an experienced auditor brings much more value to an audit and to the business than would be possible otherwise.
An auditor needs to be familiar with the requiremnts of the standards and checklists to ensure they are being complied with. A competent, qualified, and experienced auditor gives useful insights into the business processes to quality managers and top-level management. Trained auditors follow set procedures for conducting audits, preparing reports, and identifying non-conformance that will require attention. The information they provide can help decision-makers proceed with well-informed changes and improvements to the business, and confirm that changes have been effectively implemented..
Criteria for Choosing an Auditor
Various factors prove essential when selecting the right auditor, though the three most deciding of them all can be as follows:
The auditor selected for an audit must be qualified to conduct that audit. Whilst the auditor needs to be “independent”, this does not mean that they should not be a subject matter expert in the activity they are auditing. The independence merely means that they cannot audit their own work, or are swayed by other influences. The closer they are to knowledge of the subject matter, the more efficiently they will be able to audit, spot issues, recognize risk, and deep dive into areas that need attention. Audit reports will also be better prepared and explained to the intended audience if the auditor is familiar with the subject and can use appropriate terminology to convey findings.
2. Industry Experience
Industry experience, knowledge and the qualifications of the auditor are intrinsically linked. Along with having audit training and possessing the right qualifications to conduct an audit, the auditor must have audit experience in the industry of your business. Experience assist in risk evaluation, particularly where the auditor has an understanding of what could go wrong and what the consequences would be, and the types of controls they would expect to be documented and implemented. An experienced auditor can be invaluable as the audit can be focused and precise, and be an efficient use of time. As already mentioned, a professional auditor can also provide your management with crucial insights about your business processes and performance.
3. Return on Investment
Whether you use internal audit resources or hire auditors, there is still a cost for undertaking audits. Good audits bring a return on investment for these costs by identifying improvements, confirming necessary processes are in place, and confirm changes to practices are in place and effective. By ensuring you have audits undertaken by qualified, experienced and knowledgeable auditors, ensure you have efficient audits, with feedback and reports back to management that allows reliable decision making on system improvements.
How Automation Can Help
Manually going through every profile detail of an auditor before each audit is a painstaking task. There are also risks of overlooking where essential skills or knowledge may be required. Automation can help rank and match the auditor skills to the task, and allow you to scan through a list of qualified and experienced auditors efficiently. Compliance audit management systems help select the best available auditor for your audits.
A well-designed compliance audit software can streamline the process of selecting an appropriate auditor. It matches the type of audit to be held, industry and business type, requirements of your audit with the list of available auditors. Powerful workflows help narrow down the choice of appropriate auditors found suitable for the task.
Automation can help your organization select the right auditor with the required skillset, qualification, and experience so you will get the most from your audits. With the help of powerful compliance audit software, effective audits are only a few clicks away. Save valuable time selecting the right auditor for each audit task and invest the time saved and improved outcomes in the growth of your organisation as a whole. Contact Mobiom for more information on how to match auditors with the proper audit task.