In the manufacturing or assembly process, an ISO Audit is one of the most important tasks to be undertaken. An audit brings verification that the management system in place is compliant with the relevant ISO standard. It ensures that the actions being taken by an organisation are suitable to meet its quality objectives and that any problems within the management system, identified by the audit, are addressed. In short, an ISO Audit is a check to ensure that a company is doing what it says it is doing. PSL Datatrack production control software is already helping many organisations to achieve or maintain ISO accreditation.
The actual ISO definition for an audit is a systematic and independent examination to determine whether quality activities and related results comply with planned arrangements, whether these arrangements are implemented effectively and are suitable to achieve objectives.
There are three main types of ISO audit: First Party Audit – an internal audit conducted internally by a company's own staff or by an external company if companies do not have the internal resources. Second Party Audit – a supplier audit, usually carried out by a company's own staff or by an external company if companies do not have the internal resources, to ensure that supplier companies are doing what they say they are doing. Third Party Audit – a certification audit and is always carried out by a Certification Body auditor. These audits are for the purpose of gaining or renewing certification to the relevant ISO standard by an approved body and are usually the most important to small businesses.
Businesses can also face Customer Audits, which are usually carried out by staff from an organisation's customers and are to ensure that supplier organisations are actually doing/supplying what they say they are.
Third Party Audits can be conducted against standards including ISO 9001:2015, AS9100, TS 16949 as well as any others deemed necessary. Clause 8.2.2 under ISO 9001 states that an organisation shall conduct internal audits at planned intervals to determine whether the quality management system (QMS) conforms to the planned arrangements, to the requirements of the International Standard and to the QMS requirements established by the organisation. The QMS must also be effectively implemented and maintained.
After implementation of a PSL Datatrack system, many companies have realised multiple benefits including faster order placements, quicker fulfilment of enquiries, more efficient allocation of materials to jobs and a full traceability history, including the generation of certificates which are vital to so many industries including aerospace and defence. ISO accreditation can help companies to attract more work from larger organisations that they may not have previously dealt with. This is prevalent in the field of renewable energy where manufacturers and suppliers overwhelmingly insist that their suppliers have such accreditation.
In short, without an audit of a company's system(s) there is no proof that things are working correctly and being continually improved. Using PSL Datatrack production control software can provide invaluable assistance in providing accurate information for any of the different types of audit.
The system can ensure complete manufacturing traceability by providing and recalling full documentation of every job for every customer instantly. PSL Datatrack has a traceability summary report in its Works Orders module which shows a concise summary for every job of related records from all other PSL Datatrack modules. This includes component and material issues, purchase orders placed, goods received, supplier and works non conformances, gauges issued, Shop Floor Data Collection (SFDC) transactions, delivery notes, rejects, invoices and credit notes. In addition, the CRM/Tasks module can be used to manage a company’s drive for continual improvement by recording, measuring and providing evidence of tasks as the basis for improvement or rectification.
Many PSL Datatrack customers have benefited from using the software as part of their ISO Audit procedures. When looking to achieve ISO 9001:2015 accreditation, subcontract engineers G23 Engineering Limited invested in PSL Datatrack on the recommendation of their ISO consultant who had already witnessed how other companies had benefited from the software in their own quest for ISO accreditation.
Adam Green says: “Anything the inspector asks for we can access immediately through PSL Datatrack. We can call up historic information quickly and quote accurately with consideration for variable stock holding, materials and manufacturing quantities, in full knowledge that the quotations will be accurate and not over or under priced.”
Subcontract engineering company Bernard Holmes Precision Limited was keen to implement a production control system that would make its path to ISO accreditation as smooth as possible. Russell Thackray comments: “I would definitely recommend PSL Datatrack to any other company like ours looking for ISO 9001 accreditation. It made our presentation to the auditors highly professional and we were able to confirm everything they needed to know about our company information and procedures with just two or three clicks of the mouse.”
RDL Technologies Limited achieved ISO 9001 accreditation within just six weeks of PSL Datatrack being installed and Production Control Manager Lewis Lockwood believes this would never have been possible without it in place. “The auditor even made a special note regarding the PSL Datatrack system. He was very impressed with how quick and easy it was to keep track of a job from the initial enquiry through to invoicing.”