Selecting potential internal auditors


Involved In Discussions
Good afternoon all,
Recently we have had some movements of staff, this has led to the internal audit team diminishing. Because of this, I am arranging external training for potentially 5 new internal auditors. The 5 people who have put their names forward, are all shopfloor, and have NO experience of auditing at all, hence the external training and then internal support from the existing audit team.

As the training will be a new experience for these guys, I was wondering whether anyone had any exercises/tests/introductions that I can give to the guys, firstly to make sure that they realize what is required and so that they are not caught like a rabbit in the headlights when the external trainer starts.

Any suggestions welcomed


Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
I can only support your concern about internal auditor selection. One of the most prevalent reasons for internal audit programs to be useless has to do with the fact that most internal auditors don't have the competence to perform as such.

They don't understand the business processes and how such processes affect product conformity and customer satisfaction.

They don't possess the personal behavior attributes, the knowledge and skills, as suggested in ISO 19011 Section 7.2.

Good luck in screening your internal auditor candidates. That's one of the foundations in developing a value-added internal audit program.

Check the Why are GOOD Internal Auditors so hard to find? thread.
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Not out of the crisis
Super Moderator
I would buy the QCI CQA Primer and let each of them read through it to gauge their interest and understanding.

I've used shop floor people before. As long as the entire audit team has others more familiar with other business processes I'd welcome them. It will be an eye opener.


Change Agent and Data Storyteller
Super Moderator
When I've done internal auditor training in-house with my organizations, I do mock audits. I bring in a process owner - who's willing to have some fun - and the trainees interview him/her to the requirements. It's a good way to see:
  • The trainee's interview style
  • Determine if trainee's ask only the 'shall' or keep the "audit" more like a discussion
  • Ascertain how well they troubleshoot and think on their feet
  • Identify strengths and areas for them to work on.

But this is done after the training. It sounds like you want to do something before they go on training. What about:
  • Having them shadow you (one or two at a time) on an internal audit that you're doing
  • Walk them through your organization's internal audit process - showing them prep docs, audit docs, reports, findings, etc.
  • Introduce them more fully on your organization's QMS so that when they go for training, they can start to see the relationship between the standard and your QMS.
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