Personnel Not Following Procedures - How do you write up an audit finding?

What part of the 9001 standard do you cite for "not following procedures"?

  • It should be written up under section 4.1

    Votes: 2 8.0%
  • It should be written up under section 7.5.1b

    Votes: 1 4.0%
  • Following procedures is implicit. I reference the procedure not followed, not the standard

    Votes: 16 64.0%
  • Other

    Votes: 6 24.0%

  • Total voters
    25
  • Poll closed .

AndyN

A problem shared...
Staff member
Super Moderator
#2
You don't - because it's not helpful!

What you won't get is effective or even appropriate corrective action, from such a finding. I believe that this type of audit report is what drives management nutz. You're only telling them half the info they need to get the issue corrected! Just like any 'puzzle' you need two bits of data.

So, even though they weren't 'following procedures', was the result satisfactory? Did the 'product' meet the internal or customer requirements, because, if so, then the procedure needs to be changed.

If not, then we need to find out what to do about sub-standard product (contain etc.) and then find out why the folks didn't 'follow' the procedure.

You see, one solution is infinitely easier to fix, if you include what's 'effective' as part of the audit finding!

Andy
 

Cari Spears

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#3
AndyN said:
You don't - because it's not helpful!
I disagree.

Write up a nonconformance to your internal procedure. Then everyone will be forced to look at the procedure and either revise it or delete it - or they may decide to address the reason personnel aren't following it.

Either way - if people aren't following established procedures - the people in charge need to determine why.
 

ralphsulser

Inactive Registered Visitor
#4
Cari Spears said:
I disagree.

Write up a nonconformance to your internal procedure. Then everyone will be forced to look at the procedure and either revise it or delete it - or they may decide to address the reason personnel aren't following it.

Either way - if people aren't following established procedures - the people in charge need to determine why.
I agree with Cari, ....5 whys
 

ScottK

Not out of the crisis
Staff member
Super Moderator
#5
I'm with Cari.
The main purpose of audits is to determine if the company is "doing what it says", is it not?

And I write it against the procedure not being followed, not necessarily a standard element.
 

Coury Ferguson

Moderator here to help
Staff member
Moderator
#6
AndyN said:
You don't - because it's not helpful!
I also agree with Cari. There was a failure to follow documented procedures of the QMS, therefore it should be documented. and appropriate action taken.
 

tyker

Involved - Posts
#7
I would write a nonconformity referencing the procedure.

It's not the auditor's job to determine why the procedure isn't being followed although, as an internal auditor, I might have a valid opinion. It's up to the owner of the relevant process to determine if there's a disciplinary/training issue or whether the people doing the job have genuinely found a better way of doing it.
 

AndyN

A problem shared...
Staff member
Super Moderator
#8
What is missing here is the 'effectiveness' of the situation. From my 25 years of auditing experience, I can safely say that this type of audit finding is simply insufficient to help management (who probably weren't involved in the audit, anyway) come to a conclusion about what needs to be fixed.;)

And no, I don't subscribe to the opinion that (internal) audits aren't there to (simply) confirm "we did what we said" - especially with the advent of the ISO 9001:2000 standard. If what's being achieved is a 'quality' result, then the procedure is probably wrong (since when did anyone really write an effective procedure that didn't need some input from the people don't the job?). If the result isn't a quality one, then yes, maybe someone does need to do some form of problem solving.........:agree1:

O.K I'm in the minority, but then so were the folks who found out the world isn't flat...........:lol:

Andy
 

Cari Spears

Super Moderator
Super Moderator
#9
AndyN said:
If what's being achieved is a 'quality' result, then the procedure is probably wrong
So bring it to management's attention and revise or delete the procedure. Why wouldn't someone want to know that procedures aren't being followed?
 

Aaron Lupo

Inactive Registered Visitor
#10
AndyN said:
You don't - because it's not helpful!

What you won't get is effective or even appropriate corrective action, from such a finding. I believe that this type of audit report is what drives management nutz. You're only telling them half the info they need to get the issue corrected! Just like any 'puzzle' you need two bits of data.

So, even though they weren't 'following procedures', was the result satisfactory? Did the 'product' meet the internal or customer requirements, because, if so, then the procedure needs to be changed.

If not, then we need to find out what to do about sub-standard product (contain etc.) and then find out why the folks didn't 'follow' the procedure.

You see, one solution is infinitely easier to fix, if you include what's 'effective' as part of the audit finding!

Andy
Andy-

I agree with everything you stated above, however, that information would be included in the response to the finding. You could add a note to the finding that states something along the lines of: Procedre/WI XXX was not being followed, however, it was determined that the product/service did/did not meet the specifications. If it did not meet the specs. you have a potential for a major problem, if it did meets specs. part of the investigation to the finding would be then what is wrong with the documented procedure/W that was causing them not to follow it.
 
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