Information required when requesting a COR audit quote

It is the time of the year that businesses begin their search for COR Auditors.  Whether it is your company’s first certification, re-certification or maintenance audit, when you are requesting a quote there is important information you should provide in order to receive an accurate quote from suppliers.

  1.  Who is your Certifying Partner.  Most auditors are certified to conduct audits with more than one Certifying Partner.  It is important to provide the name of your Certifying Partner as each CP has their own audit tool.  Time preparing the final audit report can vary according to the audit tool being used.  You will also want to ensure the auditor you choose is certified to conduct your audit with your current CP.
  2. What type of audit do you require.  Is this audit being conducted to receive your first COR, to re-certify or a maintenance year audit.  The process and time frame for the audit is the same however if this is the certifying audit, most auditors will ensure the company has all the required training and met the initial requirements prior to providing a quote for services.
  3. How many employees work for the company.  Audit protocols set the number of interviews required by the number of employees.  The number of interviews required must be know to determine the amount of hours that must be scheduled for conducting interviews.
  4. How many sites or locations does the company have.  Audit protocols set the number of sites that are to be included in the scope of the audit.  Depending on the number of sites, not all sites are included in the scope of the audit.  Head office must be included each year, the other sites are included on a rotating basis.  Each site included in the scope must be visited during audit activities.  Travel time and expenses are included in quotes and therefore this information is important.
  5. Where are the required documents kept.  A number of businesses keep the majority of their documentation at their head office.  Auditors must know how much time they will require to spend at each site reviewing documentation.  There are certain documents that are reviewed at all sites visited, even if the majority of the documentation is located at the head office.  Examples include emergency response programs and inspections should be available at each site visited.

Each auditor may have additional questions to be answered before a quote is provided, but these are the basic questions that must be answered to ensure an accurate quote.  The majority of the auditors will determine the amount of time required by the number of locations visited and the number of employees interviewed to calculate the number of hours and days it will take to conduct the audit and price their quotes accordingly.

In addition auditors will need to schedule time to conduct observations.  Observations are done when documentation and interviews are completed.  This is the third method of verification and auditors are looking to see that actions noted in documentation or interviews has been completed.

To ensure the quotes you receive are accurate it is important to provide as much information as possible.

An additional tip is when possible conduct your audits early in the calendar year.  Many businesses wait until the fourth quarter of the calendar year to conduct their audits.  This can make it hard to find auditors to meet your requirements and may increase the time an audit takes to pass Quality Assurance Review, due to the number of audits the CP receives during this time.  Conducting audits earlier in the year also provides the business the opportunity to make corrections and re-audit in the rare case a limited scope audit is required.

I hope these tips are useful and wish you all success in your COR audit process.