This article will briefly discuss the following:
- what is an internal audit checklist;
- who should perform internal audits;
- how to conduct internal audits;
- internal audit checklist contents;
- powerful tool for conducting internal audits; and
- free internal audit checklists you can download and use.
An internal audit checklist is a tool used by internal auditors in manufacturing companies, the service sector, and multiple other industries to assess if an organization’s current performance and processes are consistently aligned with standards set by the company and the industry it belongs to. It is also used to determine if a company is operating in compliance with regulations. Meeting industry standards help facilitate the ease of doing business with other institutions, while complying with regulations help ensure continued business operation.
Whether an independent, third-party, internal auditor from an auditing consultancy firm, or an employee tasked to conduct internal audits, an internal auditor is someone who, ideally, should be both an expert in the field being audited and trained to be impartial in conducting internal audit inspections. Internal audits should specifically inspect measurable and observable variables that impact or represent the level of quality, safety, and security of a company and its offered products and services.
Conducting internal audits involves preparation and engaging the right people. Here are 5 practical steps on conducting internal audits.
- Know which standards are being followed by the organization, its current processes, and company goals. Determine what will be audited and who will be involved in the internal audit. Create the internal audit checklist form to be used for the internal audit based on this information.
- Assign the auditing task and set the schedule for the internal audit. Use internal audit software like iAuditor by SafetyCulture to help ensure that sufficient and crucial data are collected during the internal audit.
- Collect the internal audit reports and analyze the data gathered to determine the current status of the company.
- Prepare a plan of action on what needs to be done in order to address any concerns discovered during the internal audit. Use the information from the internal audit reports to formulate training programs for employee competencies or improvement of processes.
- Implement changes and continue conducting regular audits to track progress. Ensure that the internal audit checklist is up-to-date with changes in the organization or with industry standards to help facilitate continuous process improvement
Internal audit checklists can vary depending on the intended goal of the audit. This summarized sample content highlights the sections of an internal audit checklist based on the ISO 9001:2015 standard which is designed to assess the Quality Management System (QMS) of an organization.
- Context of the Organization
This section aims to know if the organization has identified internal and external issues that impacts the organization and if performance indicators were established.
The leadership section intends to know if the organizational leadership’s roles and responsibilities have been identified for QMS.
This section checks if risks and opportunities are identified and the organization has planned actions for them.
The support section aims to establish if the organization provided the resources (people, environment, and infrastructure) that will help achieve the intended QMS to be implemented.
The operation section intends to confirm if the organization has planned, implemented, and maintained processes that aims to meet the requirements for products and services.
- Performance Evaluation
This section aims to determine if the organization identified monitoring and performance evaluation protocols that ensure valid results.
Important for ISO standards, this section intends to establish if the organization has continuous process improvement in place.
Another crucial feature of an internal audit and its checklist is that it is not static, it needs to adapt to changes and make sure that it aims to consistently align the organization with current standards.
iAuditor by SafetyCulture, is a powerful auditing app that internal auditors can use on Apple or Android devices to ensure that internal audits are consistently conducted on time and that all steps are taken to capture crucial information that will be analyzed. With the iAuditor, you can:
- Create internal audit templates that fits the need of the organization in order to meet its goals and standards
- Schedule and delegate internal audits to the auditing team and monitor results
- Capture data using mobile devices and include photos for added context on observations during internal audits
- Have the option to assign corrective actions for any urgent issues found during internal audits
- Automatically generate internal audit reports in cloud storage for secure recordkeeping
- Use iAuditor Analytics to deep dive on the data collected and formulate process improvements. Preview a sample internal audit pdf here.
- Have access to free internal audit checklists you can download and use right away!
Internal Audit Checklists
Internal Audit Checklist Template for Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP)
Use this internal audit checklist to assess if a company’s manufacturing facility aligns with Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). This checklist is divided into 9 sections and applies scoring which will give you insight into how the company is performing. Conduct GMP internal audits with this checklist using iAuditor on your mobile or tablet, capture photo evidence of non-compliance, and have the option to assign corrective action items for immediate resolution of urgent issues found during internal audits. All iAuditor internal audit checklist templates can be edited to fit the needs of your organization.
Internal Audit Checklist - ISO 27001:2013
Use this internal audit checklist to assess the current state of the organization’s Information Security Management System based on the international standard for ISMS. This checklist can also help chief information officers work towards ISO 27001 certification by discovering process gaps, reviewing current ISMS, and implementing improvements in the organization.