Definition of Repeat Audit Findings

K

Kodonnel

#1
What is your definition of a 'Repeat Finding'. For a global company we are assessing the definition of a 'repeat finding'. Current definition is that is its a Similar finding identified at any other audit (globally) within the last 18 months and/or the previous equivalent audit applying only to major findings for the same issue/root cause. What is your definition of a 'repeat finding' and how do you apply it... based on audit question, policy/spec section or root cause? We are interested in benchmarking this topic further as we have similar operations across many different countries but sometimes the symptom may different for non compliance to the same requirement.
 
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Steve Prevette

Deming Disciple
Staff member
Super Moderator
#2
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

I will only report that in my experience, this is a very sensitive topic. Many groups purport to want to know what this is, but then game the definitions so they never find any. I vividly remember a group with two similar knee injuries, but a convoluted explanation that one injury was to a left knee, and the other to a right knee, so there was no "repeat" issue.
 
#3
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

What is your definition of a 'Repeat Finding'. For a global company we are assessing the definition of a 'repeat finding'. Current definition is that is its a Similar finding identified at any other audit (globally) within the last 18 months and/or the previous equivalent audit applying only to major findings for the same issue/root cause. What is your definition of a 'repeat finding' and how do you apply it... based on audit question, policy/spec section or root cause? We are interested in benchmarking this topic further as we have similar operations across many different countries but sometimes the symptom may different for non compliance to the same requirement.
When an auditor visits (at a different time) the exact same place, people, documents etc and the same issue can be found. Anything else might not actually be a "repeat", as Steve suggests.
 

Miner

Forum Moderator
Staff member
Admin
#4
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

When an auditor visits (at a different time) the exact same place, people, documents etc and the same issue can be found. Anything else might not actually be a "repeat", as Steve suggests.
I would qualify this as appropriate for a single site certificate. However, if it is a multi-site certificate, and the same issue is found at multiple sites on the same certificate, I have seen it considered by external auditors as a repeat finding.
 
#5
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

I would qualify this as appropriate for a single site certificate. However, if it is a multi-site certificate, and the same issue is found at multiple sites on the same certificate, I have seen it considered by external auditors as a repeat finding.
True - I had not considered it as a multi-site issue. Wouldn't it have been, therefore more of a "corrective action" implementation and effectiveness issue rather than anything?
 

Miner

Forum Moderator
Staff member
Admin
#6
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

Probably depends more on the auditor. In the case I was citing, if the auditor found the same minor nonconformance repeated at multiple sites, it became escalated to a major nonconformance. It could have been considered a breakdown in CA also.
 

Bev D

Heretical Statistician
Staff member
Super Moderator
#7
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

well repeat (nonconformances) findings can result locally for an incorrect identification of cause and/or a weak corrective action. They result globally if an effective correction is not shared and/or implemented globally...OR if the cause actually different for another site than for the original site...


This is one of the difficulties of 'repeat findings'. A repeat finding is really both a repeat of the nonconformance AND the cause. Many nonconformances will have multiple potential and viable causes...

so this isn't a cookbook task - it takes intelligence and thought.
 

Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
Staff member
Admin
#9
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

Similar finding identified at any other audit (globally) within the last 18 months and/or the previous equivalent audit applying only to major findings for the same issue/root cause.
I suspect the need to have this definition has to do with a multi-site certification scheme, using sampling.

The IAF MD1 document stipulates that the central function MUST have authority and responsibility to assess nonconformities and the potential need for corrective action system-wide. In your own definition, you used the term "major finding"; however, there is no such definition in ISO 9000. Some industry specific documents define major NC's, but they are not universally deployed.

I like Bev's approach and, if you are trying to gather ammunition to fight your CB, I would much rather attempt to engage in a dialogue and convey to the external auditors that some nonconformities, such as, eg, obsolete documents being used will never be able to be totally eradicated, due to the shear number of potential occurrences.

On the other hand, if you want to benefit from a multi-site, sampling-based certification program, the central function MUST perform their duties and manage the corrective action process in a system, corporate-wide manner. Otherwise, the corporation is NOT eligible to certification by sampling.
 

SRQAAuditor

Starting to get Involved
#10
Re: Definition of Repeat Findings

Bev; and others, but I noticed in Bev answer, wouldn't your response suggest that the corrective action was in-effective?
 
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