Why have IATF rules required the CBs to audit remote supporting functions at first?

morteza

Trusted Information Resource
#1
Hi all,

In clause 5.5, IATF rules (5th ed.) states that:

When planning the initial stage 2 audit, the remote supporting function shall be audited prior to the site.

Additional audits of remote supporting functions may be necessary based upon their demonstrated performance as seen at the site(s) they support.

I think that it would be illogical to audit remote support locations when there is no clue. For Example it is better to audit purchasing function (remote) after you got good clues from incoming quality or production processes.

I have not faced any addition audit of remote supporting functions yet.

So, my question is that:

Why IATF rules require the CBs to audit the remote supporting functions prior to the site? Is not it better to audit remote supporting functions after site audit?



Thanks all
 
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Sidney Vianna

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#3
Yes, good question. Since I was not involved with the development of the IATF Rules, I can only speculate.

First, we have to remember that the on site audits of the remote functions happens after stage 1, so auditors should have some “clue” of the processes there.

Secondly, I believe that in the process flow, most of the remote functions are involved with upstream processes of the manufacturing operations, so, from an auditing planning perspective, there is a good chance that the output of the remote site audit could be meaningful input into the auditing of the processes in the manufacturing site.

But the question remains if there is good communication between the audit teams of the remote sites and the teams involved with the production plant.
 

Sebastian

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#4
When system process is audited, its flow sequence shall be respected. Usually activities performed by Remote Location e.g. product design take place "before" activities performed by Manufacturing Site, e.g. process design. It is a reason why this audit sequence shall be respected. RL should tell what are MS requirements and what are your outputs, then MS should tell what do you expect from RL and what you get.
Regarding purchasing example, process flow can be like that RL - Selection, evaluation and development of supplier, MS - supplier's product/process approval, supplier's performance monitoring and RL - re-evaluation and development of supplier. Also here RL is "before "MS".
 

morteza

Trusted Information Resource
#5
When system process is audited, its flow sequence shall be respected. Usually activities performed by Remote Location e.g. product design take place "before" activities performed by Manufacturing Site, e.g. process design. It is a reason why this audit sequence shall be respected. RL should tell what are MS requirements and what are your outputs, then MS should tell what do you expect from RL and what you get.
Regarding purchasing example, process flow can be like that RL - Selection, evaluation and development of supplier, MS - supplier's product/process approval, supplier's performance monitoring and RL - re-evaluation and development of supplier. Also here RL is "before "MS".
Hi Sebastian,

I think only checking the process in general, would not be a smart and value added audit. for processes you mentioned in your post, consider the following usual situations and please answer which audit method would be better:

1) product process design

A) the audit team go to remote location (design dept.), ask the organization about it new product development and select randomly (or after study of the provided information by the client) a project and check the design process inputs, outputs, etc
B) On site audit and after auditing the CRM/Warranty management/CAPA processes, the audit team realize that the failure of part X in a product assembly happened for 15 times through previous audit (last year). So, the team decides to select the part X design and its verification and validation as an audit clue.

2) purchasing process
A) the auditor refer to purchasing department (remote location) and ask the auditee about the list of suppliers, select a supplier randomly and check its initial assessment records, monitoring records, Development process, etc.
B) During site audit an in production process the auditor realize that the part X (provided externally) which has the highest quality grade, has the highest in-process scrap due to the its low quality. Also, some incoming batches of this part has rejected by quality dept. during last six months. So, the auditor decides to select the supplier of part X as a clue to check in purchasing process.
 

Sebastian

Trusted Information Resource
#6
Dear morteza, you hit the nail on the head.
RL shows to auditor only perfect sample of support they give to MS.
MS in own wrong understanding of what is good for them, shows other one perfect sample of support they get from RL.
Auditor does not find any reasons to issue NC and MS still bothers with ... they get from RL.

This is a huge weak point of auditing RL, but sequence wont improve it, in my opinion.
Additionally, you have to know, that even report from RL points out activities, that RL is supporting MS with, it does not automatically mean, that these activities were in fact audited. This is only report.
I don't see good solution for that, but maybe putting more pressure on internal auditing of support activities would improve it, but I am not sure.
 
#7
but maybe putting more pressure on internal auditing of support activities would improve it,
In my experience, most CB auditors have zero clue what internal audits are about. I don't think any "pressure" is going to accomplish anything. The fact is, RL vs MS audits need a lot of planning and review, in particular of data and things like non-conforming product analysis, and there's zero time in the audit for doing that properly.
 

Judegu

Starting to get Involved
#8
Regarding purchasing example, process flow can be like that RL - Selection, evaluation and development of supplier, MS - supplier's product/process approval, supplier's performance monitoring and RL - re-evaluation and development of supplier. Also here RL is "before "MS".
Hi Sebastian. The relationship between RL and MS in term of QMS is quite tricky in my perspective. I am actually working in a manufacturing site in China. And surely we got an abroad corporate HQ in Korea. And the HQ is reponsible for handling several activities, from selection of the supplier to product development.What is more, when some quality accident happens, HQ would be also involved in the handling this kind of accident for being play an big role in handling the customer complaints. In my case, HQ has to be the natural RL of the MS where I works. As a result of this nature, the interfaces between HQ and MS in the processes where they are both heavily involved, are not quite smooth. The above is just my personal idea regarding the LR and MS.
And in the case you mentioned, you have divided the purchasing process to several process steps and assign theses steps to RL and MS seperately.
My question is the RL here is kind of like the corporate HQ in my case? Is there any situation which fit your example?
 
#9
Hi all,

In clause 5.5, IATF rules (5th ed.) states that:

When planning the initial stage 2 audit, the remote supporting function shall be audited prior to the site.

Additional audits of remote supporting functions may be necessary based upon their demonstrated performance as seen at the site(s) they support.

I think that it would be illogical to audit remote support locations when there is no clue. For Example it is better to audit purchasing function (remote) after you got good clues from incoming quality or production processes.

I have not faced any addition audit of remote supporting functions yet.

So, my question is that:

Why IATF rules require the CBs to audit the remote supporting functions prior to the site? Is not it better to audit remote supporting functions after site audit?



Thanks all
During our Transition Audit last year our RL in US was audited after us (MS), I've submitted a gap analysis but we conducted an internal audit to them prior the transition. Our 3 RLs in China was audited first based on the support they've provided to us.
 

Sebastian

Trusted Information Resource
#10
Dear Judegu, yes in my example related to purchasing process, RL is your HQ. It is a very common example of corporate approach to managing some activities, which can be done independently by MS.
Company I work for has two schemes, one for overseas suppliers where RL is involved and second where we, as MS do everything by ourselves. Problem witch first scheme is that our RL denies supporting us. It is only question of time we will get NC, when CB auditor will detect it. NC would be "awarded" to MS, not RL as it is MS responsibility to manage internal processes and "force" RL to inform CB who audits them about all supports they give to MS.
This is one of criteria you can choose to evaluate corporation maturity level. I know companies who are very strict about it even on MS - MS interaction level, where one MS is also RL to another MS within same corporation.
 
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