Nowadays, factory auditing is becoming quite popular among the masses due to its plethora of benefits. More and more companies are realizing the benefits of factory auditing to make their business and manufacturing process more effective and transparent. It not only helps your business process get in shape, but also helps in minimizing various potential risks.
In this blog post, I have shared with you three of the most common types of factory auditing services that retailers might require. You’ll also learn a bit about each type of auditing and what areas of manufacturing they concern.
- Social Compliance Auditing Services
This type of factory auditing is sometimes called ethical and social audits or social accountability audits. It refers to monitoring the supply chain of the retailers to verify needs for working conditions. The requirements of social compliance set by retailers frequently include various areas concerning:
- Fire exits
- Protective gear for workers
- Workers’ insurance
- Storage of hazardous materials
Social compliance audits also help brands and retailers to manage risks of social compliance that could impact the finances of companies. There can be negative publicity which results from the unethical labour practices or poor working conditions. It could do significant damage to a brand’s global reputation.
For instance, the targeted social compliance auditing has been conducted widely in factories that produce Target-brand products. In this program, there are two types of non-compliant facilities: zero tolerance and one-year non-compliant. For one-year non-compliant facility, Target allows the facility 3 more opportunities to correct their variegated issues and pass a subsequent auditing.
If a facility fails that audit because of violations in forced labour, child labour, corporal punishment or conflict of interest, retailers will refuse all the products manufactured in those facilities for up to 3 years.
- Quality System Audit
Quality System Auditis the second most common type of factory audit service. It is a type of factory audit used to comprehend if the supplier is producing quality products in a way that’ll ensure on-time delivery and quality.
Mainly, a quality system auditing services will be performed at a specific time interval and includes evaluating management techniques, quality systems, machinery maintenance and various factors. A facility that can pass this auditing service should normally have a clear internal system monitoring procedures that can ensure effective and reliable actions. There are several standards and regulations for quality system audits, such as AS9100, ISO 9000, ISO 13485 or the FDA’s QSR.
ISO 9000 standard concern the quality management system for those institutions that are capable to provide services and products that can meet the demands of their clients. There are 8 quality management principles defined in this system, including:
- Customer focus
- Involvement of people
- Process approach
- System approach to management
- Continual improvement
- Factual approach to decision making and
- Mutually beneficial supplier relationships
- Security Audit
It is the least common type of factory auditsamong these three types that a retailer might require. Certain brands and retailers need this audit to remain compliant with Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) regulations in the United States.
The focus of this auditing service is to find out if the manufacturing site is secure enough and what are the risks of terrorism associated with the facility. U.S. customs and Border Protection set C-TPAT which focuses on identifying security gaps, protecting the supply chain, and implementing specific security measures & best practices related to preventing terrorism.
So, in this blog you find three common types of audits which most of the factory audit companies are providing, that may be needed by a retailer or brand, including:
- Social compliance audits – those that verify labour practices and working conditions
- Quality system audits – those that are looking for the quality management
- Security audits – those that are looking for risk of terrorism and confirm compliance to C-TPAT standards