Remote audits: how COVID-19 accelerates innovation from a distance
Jun. 2 2020
Faced with the Covid-19 epidemic, which has affected several auditing countries and clients, Bureau Veritas has adapted by deploying remote audits as per IAF MD 4 (Mandatory Document for the use of Computer Assisted Auditing Techniques (“CAAT”) for Accredited Certification of Management Systems).
A remote audit entails any evaluation of the company’s systems using software and hardware such as smartphones, handheld devices, laptop computers, desktop computers, drones, video cameras, wearable technology, artificial intelligence, and others.
This approach allows us to protect your Certification through the use of secure and confidential remote audits. Bureau Veritas is not new to this approach as this practice has been adopted since the 1st issue of IAF MD 4 on 15 May 2008.
"Following the cancellation of all business travel in March, we anticipated a total containment due to COVID 19. We then prepared for the remote working of our teams. This preparation then proceeded in a highly structured manner and we started to engage our accreditation bodies and scheme owners to ensure that there is no threat to our Licence to operate and we continue to do so.
Depending on the type of audit as well as sector your organization falls under, remote audits may be done 100 % remotely.
One of the key services that Bureau Veritas also offers is the UKAS accredited ISO 27001 (Information Security Management Systems) international standard that specifies the requirements for establishing, implementing, maintaining and continually improving an information security management system within the context of the organization. This audit in addition can be done 100 % remotely.
Thanks to digital tools, the remote auditing process is fully expedited through live interviews, sharing of documents and auditing of operational areas.
In the end, remote auditing is an effective way to take advantage of the current period. Carried out easily, without any impact on time or process, it generates certain savings linked to travel costs (including visa’s, plane tickets, hotel rooms, local transport and meals) while reducing CO2 emissions. "From this point of view, the Covid-19 pandemic will have a positive impact on our offer. In our reflection on post-confinement, we will systematically integrate the opportunity to carry out the audit remotely. To encourage its development, we are already taking into account the new labels that we are setting up with our clients and partners. Our clients can rest assured that we are there to support them and enable them to continue working with the best possible solutions. From this point of view, today, the remote audit is the right process. During this period of reduced activity, we need to prioritise remote audits before the boom at the exit of containment," concludes Suresh Reddy, Certification Market Leader for Africa.