A VERY Small Company - Internal Audit



a dozen questions

Hi. I'm new here, and have a few questions.
Our Quality Manager left the company a few months back. No one has been appointed to take her place. The president/owner has taken over the responsibility of QM. It is a small company of 3. (was 6 2 years ago) I'm an internal auditor. I'm seeing a major conflict of interest in this situation. (i see too much going on such as customer complaints not logged, lying to cover up N/C etc. ) It's a ISO nightmare here. Should this be happening?
Elsmar Forum Sponsor


Who is being lied to? The cusotmer or other internal people.

It sounds like your President is either:

1. Not qualified and/or capable of handling the additional responsibility of quality manager.

2. Does not have the willingness/desire to fix problems and improve the company.

Could be a cultural problem or a personnel capacity problem. When people are busy the paperwork seems the first thing to get dropped, so that could explain why complaints are not being logged. If it is cultural you are in for a much tougher battle to change the owner's attitude.

Why did the QM leave in the first place?


Aaron Lupo

Being that it is a small company is it a conflict of interest, I would say no. I am sure you can understand that in a small company you need to wear many hats. Now on the other hand N/C being covered up and complaints not being logged that in therory should not been happening but does it yes, it happens no matter where you go. Will it catch up to with him, I would imagine so, customers will eventually get feed up with it and take their business else where. Is your company ISO certified, what does your company do/make?
Hi doubleas,

First of all: Welcome to the Cove :bigwave:

We'll try to give you the help we can, but for the time being I can answer only one of your questions: No, this should not be happening... As for the rest, I agree with Tom & Isoguy. We need more information.



our previous QM left mainly because she was tired of being treated badly from Pres. Her audits were very well done, but if she had to issue CAR's, he would challenge her. He got very defensive/offensive. He made it almost impossible to do her job unless she wanted a conflict.
Our company manufactures chemicals and solutions.

He doesn't log customer complaints because he doesn't want the company to look bad. One of our objectives is to minimize customer complaints. So he just doesn't log them.

He hides what he can so the company doesn't look bad, he only gives half the story, keeps out things that could sway decisions.

I find this disturbing.


yes, we are certified to the new standard.
I am aware that many hats need to be worn, but he's wearing all of them. He makes the chems., ships them, bills them, etc.
And speaking of shipping them, we do have a shipper reciever that i am supposed to start training for internal audits BUT he, as far as i'm concerned, is not competant, and could NOT be objective. His competancy was "designed" by pres.
He has to be told every single day how to do his job. I'm not exaggerating. (when he comes to work that is)
I believe if he was doing internal audits, anything that was found, would be covered up and not logged, audit report would say "all good".


Very disturbing. You have a very difficult battle ahead. It sounds like he is not willing to admit problems, therefore will not fix them. Being the Owner, it is going to be difficult to correct.

It sounds like day to day activities may be more important than internal audits right now. If you want to fight the battle and correct the problems, I would recommend trying to put everything into a dollar value that he might understand came straight out of his pocket. Don't fight, just state "that problem you hid/ignored/did not fix just cost YOU $10,000". Hopefully it will wake him up.

Sounds like his attitude may have to do with why you have 50% fewer employees and appear to be going downhill. Good luck.



you hit the nail on the head. And i'm looking for a new job too, but until then............had to know if i was right or just seeing things.


How long has it been since your last registration audit? I assume you are on an annual schedule being so small. How much deterioration has their been since the last audit? A good auditor will rip the system apart in a second if it is as bad as you think.

Sounds like it might be a no win situation. You are in a political battle you probably can't win. Not to make a blatent plug for consultants, but this could be a situation where an outsider could help. It is tough for you to present bad news to him. An outsider can tell it as it is without fear of being fired or tormented daily. Of course it will be difficult to prove to him outside help is a good idea.

It could be the next outside person to review the system will be your ISO auditor, who may be leaving WITH your certificate if things continue as is. Customers may also start pulling out.

Have you seen orders/sales drop as a result of the situation and complaints?

Mike S.

Happy to be Alive
Trusted Information Resource

Glad you're looking for another job. I'd look HARD. I predict that either the next registrar audit will rip the company so badly that the Prez. will either have to straighten-up a bit or else drop ISO unless the auditor is on the take and paid-off, or else your company will go under soon and you'll be out of work on their terms and schedule, not yours. Regardless, I know the stress you must be under living and working under such a system -- it ain't easy on you mentally. What are the odds you can be happy there anytime soon? I can only guess they aren't too good. Do your best while you're there -- do what you can to help quality and the company without getting ripped by the boss or fired, and in the meantime, get very busy on finding a new job on your terms. And watch your back that you don't get into a situation where you can be held legally liable for any underhanded goings-on. CYA. Good luck!
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
C Very Small OTC (Over The Counter) Pharmaceutical Company Requirements US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 6
M Requirements management for a very small medical SW company Quality Tools, Improvement and Analysis 8
R Help/Advice for Implementation - very small engineering company ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 13
R I am headed out to do my very first Gap Analysis for a small company of 25 ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 16
Marc ISO 9001 Implementation in a Very Small Company General Auditing Discussions 0
P Is it possible to make an educated decision using a very very small sample size? Inspection, Prints (Drawings), Testing, Sampling and Related Topics 3
S How will ISO 9001 help the machinists in a very small Machine Shop ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 23
M Document Change Control for a Very Small Business Document Control Systems, Procedures, Forms and Templates 12
N Nonconforming Material (NCM) Control in very Small Manufacturing Companies ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 3
R Research involving a very small population (100 approx) - Help with Sampling Statistical Analysis Tools, Techniques and SPC 3
T Risk Management in a very small low tech, Class 1 Medical Device Manufacturer ISO 13485:2016 - Medical Device Quality Management Systems 3
K Very small batch validation ISO 11137 (VDmax25) ISO 13485:2016 - Medical Device Quality Management Systems 6
S Integrated ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 system for a very small business ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 6
M Small Lot Sizes - 30 a month - Cpk - Very large fabrication Capability, Accuracy and Stability - Processes, Machines, etc. 2
T Titles for Quality Functions - Very small business quality department query ISO 13485:2016 - Medical Device Quality Management Systems 17
T Internal Audits in very small manufacturing operation. Internal Auditing 8
R Failure Analyisis on very small components? Manufacturing and Related Processes 5
M AS9100 and the VERY small business AS9100, IAQG, NADCAP and Aerospace related Standards and Requirements 6
D Estimate Sample Size for very rare event Using Minitab Software 1
Ed Panek Very Long Lead Times for Components (Electrical) Manufacturing and Related Processes 8
S Validation Records - Very young QMS Qualification and Validation (including 21 CFR Part 11) 2
M Informational EU – Candidate List of substances of very high concern for Authorisation Medical Device and FDA Regulations and Standards News 0
M Inputs on definition of very similar processes for multi site audit sample - IAF MD1 2018 ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 5
L What is the very first step to prepare for applying EASA POA? EASA and JAA Aviation Standards and Requirements 1
Sidney Vianna ISO seems not to be aware that ILO is not very happy with ISO's work on OHS Occupational Health & Safety Management Standards 5
J Question on very low NDC number with tolerable GRR ratio's Capability, Accuracy and Stability - Processes, Machines, etc. 7
Rincewind Clinical Evaluation of very low risk medical devices EU Medical Device Regulations 3
Y Change Management in a very complex Research Organization Misc. Quality Assurance and Business Systems Related Topics 3
Randy Very proud grandfather (Randy Dec 2016) Coffee Break and Water Cooler Discussions 7
R Working on a 510(k) that is very similar to the predicate device Other US Medical Device Regulations 4
A Can we do audit in "VERY CONFIDENTIAL DEPARTMENTS"? Quality Manager and Management Related Issues 9
P Very cheap Hardness Blocks unfortunately without Traceability General Measurement Device and Calibration Topics 11
R Determining the feasibility/scope for FDA IQ/OQ against a very simple application US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 2
V Inference of bad predicted-R-Sq - But very good R-Sq and Adj-R-Sq. Using Minitab Software 2
R IMDS time frame submission for a very old product APQP and PPAP 1
B How to Demonstrate Stability and Repeatability in very Short Run Process AS9100, IAQG, NADCAP and Aerospace related Standards and Requirements 10
D Single-Point Scale Calibration - Very Large Scales General Measurement Device and Calibration Topics 3
B Very interesting article concerning MSA (Measurement System Analysis) Book, Video, Blog and Web Site Reviews and Recommendations 8
H Digging Up Bones - Inspector Retrieving Very Old Inspection Data Inspection, Prints (Drawings), Testing, Sampling and Related Topics 3
Stijloor American airports don't rank very well. Travel - Hotels, Motels, Planes and Trains 13
T Mercury is covered under RoHS but is not a substance of very high concern (SVHC) ? RoHS, REACH, ELV, IMDS and Restricted Substances 2
T Very effective movie about clean-up - Tool for 5S Training Lean in Manufacturing and Service Industries 4
Z IEC 60601-1-2 for very simple Medical Device Accessory IEC 60601 - Medical Electrical Equipment Safety Standards Series 4
J EDMS for Very Early Drug Development (Research/Drug Discovery) Pharmaceuticals (21 CFR Part 210, 21 CFR Part 211 and related Regulations) 4
G Very Basic PFMEA (Process FMEA) Guidelines FMEA and Control Plans 17
N What to do about very old MSDS Sheets Occupational Health & Safety Management Standards 24
Q Very Minimal Processes in ISO 9001:2008 ISO 9000, ISO 9001, and ISO 9004 Quality Management Systems Standards 6
Stijloor Video clips in VIMEO do not run very well. After Work and Weekend Discussion Topics 12
Stijloor Thank you very much!! Covegratulations 5
C Device 'A' has no applicable Standard, but a very similar product 'B' does Other Medical Device Related Standards 6

Similar threads

Top Bottom