Remote auditing – getting the most out of every interaction

Our remote audit capabilities enable effective and efficient activities where and whenever needed. Fully remote or coupled with physical audits, remote audits can enable time & cost-efficiency, access to competence, increases reach and mitigates risk. All the while, we ensure the same dedication and quality outcome you have come to expect.

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In an increasingly digitized world, remote audits are growing as a means to help companies manage and audit their operations, products and supply chains to build stakeholder and consumer trust. In DNV GL, we have worked on remote audit delivery modes and application. From enabling audit flexibility and frequency to making audits more dynamic, we ensure that our remote audit delivery modes satisfy requirements of accreditation bodies, scheme owners and other regulatory bodies.  Our commitment is to develop auditing in ways that let you get the most out of every interaction, every time.

When can I use remote auditing?

Remote auditing can be used in a number of situations, i.e. fully remote, during physical audits or in a combination. We make sure that the remote audit solution chosen is best suited for your company and consider from internal security policies to accreditation, scheme or regulatory requirements.

Our remote auditing delivery modes:

  • Basic Service
    • Uses off-the-shelf communication tools, such as Teams, FaceTime, Duo, WeChat on a tablet, smart phone or laptop. We connect using the tool(s) standard in your organization.
    • Effectively applied in fully remote audits or during physical audits to access difficult areas or connect additional auditor(s)/competence.
    • This delivery mode is best suited for less complex processes.
  • Premium Service
    • Uses our dedicated platform to set up a secure bilateral connection combined with smart glasses and a tablet, smart phone or laptop.
    • Primarily applied for fully remote audits.
    • When a secure, dedicated platform is demanded. Our dedicated platform allows easy collection of audit evidence, it can be annotated and transferred securely. Smart glasses allow for a full audit experience and geo-coordinates are available.
    • This delivery mode is best suited for complex processes.
Finding the right remote auditing delivery mode for your company and objectives is something that we do in collaboration. Our auditors are trained in remote auditing delivery modes and our procedures are aligned to comply with the requirements of accreditation bodies, scheme owners and other regulatory bodies. Both our solutions require very little investment and can be easily applied to any type of organization and industry.

What are the benefits?

When used in the right context with a clear objective in mind, remote audits can have multiple benefits in terms of efficiency, access to competence, increasing reach and mitigating risks. The right approach starts with what your organization wants to achieve. What is your overall objective? Knowing that will help us identify the approach needed to help you reach those goals.

Remote audit benefits range from:
  • Improving the efficiency of the audit:
    • Reduced travel-time.
    • Availability of audit team(s) with required competence, connecting and including them in the audit where needed.
    • Enabling more ground, e.g. number of sites and geographies, to be included, thus increasing your insight and control.
  • Enabling wider access to and sharing of competence:
    • Additional competence or auditor(s) can be added to any audit team in cost-efficient ways.
    • Increased access to auditor(s) with right competence, including across borders.
  • Increase your reach & mitigate risk:
    • Circumvent travel to risky areas, making more sites accessible and increasing control.
    • Maintain business continuity under severe conditions and situations.

How does it work?

Remote audits are not that different from physical audits. Regardless of the delivery model chosen, the audit centres around the scope chosen, ensuring that the right audit evidence is collected, verified and stored according to what the activity requires. However, the nature of remote audits, in particular those fully remote, does require that some things are planned or executed a bit differently.  For example:
  1. Decide & set up the tools to connect.
  2. Preparing for the audit.
  3. Planning the audit meetings.
  4. Planning for breaks and information security.
  5. Reviewing physical and electronic documents.

Frequently Asked Questions

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How does an onsite audit become a remote audit? Is it just each day spent on a laptop/device?

Answer:
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No. We recommend breaking the day up into a series of "events," including breaks for document review, and potentially splitting across days.

How do you avoid a remote audit just being a desktop/document review audit?

Answer:
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Use online meeting technology, such as Teams, Zoom etc. ensuring to break the day up into online for discussion and offline for document review. Add video of you are comfortable to regain some of the body language lost from not being onsite. 

How long can the remote audit process last if a physical site inspection is not practical?

Answer:
Answer:
This is case-by-case; and depends on various factors including scope, industry, operational situation, level of office-based activity etc. There is potential for some types of clients to undertake 100% remote auditing. 

How to manage a remote audit? #1 Auditor at home, Auditee at work

Answer:
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This is relatively straightforward - using Teams or other online meeting technology, or phone if appropriate, to walk through offices or site(s) - if safe to do so. 

How to manage a remote audit? #2 Auditor at home, Auditee at home

Answer:
Answer:
This is more challenging - but can be achieved through review of process, electronic records, interviews. Relies on technology links and ability to retrieve records. 

How to manage a remote audit? #3 Records predominantly paper-based and now not available

Answer:
Answer:
This is most challenging - unusual for all records to be paper-based, but in such circumstances we focus on what we can audit this time, and move the onsite work to the next visit. 

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