Blog, ISO 9001 Quality System

Internal ISO Audits

Internal Audits, we love to hate them!  Managing and effective Internal Audit program is not an easy task.  The biggest challenge is keeping the Internal Auditors and the Management Team engaged in the process.   Everyone seems to have more important things to do.

Internal audits are conducted at planned intervals to determine whether a Quality Management System conforms to planned Audit checklist on a deskarrangements, to the Quality Management System requirements documentation, to the companies Quality Manual Policies, and to determine if a Quality Management System is effectively implemented and maintained.  The primary focus of Internal Audits is directed at continuous improvement. 

ISO 19011:2002 Guidelines for Quality and/or Environmental Management Systems Auditing provides guidance on the principles of auditing, managing audit programs, conducting quality management system audits and environmental management system audits, as well as guidance on the competence of quality and environmental management system auditors.  It is applicable to all organizations needing to conduct internal or external audits of quality and/or environmental management systems or to manage an audit program.


Some of the main topics covered in this document are:


  • Audit Schedule Development
  • Auditor Qualifications
  • Audit Scope, Purpose and Criteria
  • Audit Planning
  • Audit Checklist
  • Opening Meeting
  • Conducting the Audit
  • Closing Meeting
  • Audit Report Documentation
  • Corrective Action Plan
  • Follow Up Activities
  • Audit Closure Documentation


Using ISO 19011 as your framework will ensure internal audit compliance and serve as a guide to train your Internal Auditors.  Training the Internal Auditors is a key to the success of the Internal Audit program.  Spend the time required to ensure the auditors understand the Internal Audit process as well as the Quality Management System Requirements.  Keep Internal Auditors engaged through training.  Have monthly meetings to discuss the audit schedule, audit findings, updates to procedures or policies and discuss goals and objectives for the Internal Audit program.  Update the Management Team at Management Review to ensure they are engaged and realize the benefits of this continuous improvement effort.  Finding non-conformances before an External Auditor does is a proactive approach!


For questions on Internal Auditing or any other Quality System Requirements, contact us at

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