Becoming a Certification Auditor
When you come to the end of a long period of employment such as when you finish your service in sectors such as (but not exclusively) the military or emergency services, you are probably looking at your options for what to do next. Taking the next step can be daunting and the choices can feel overwhelming, however BM TRADA auditor training could offer a good option for the next stage in your life.
Certification as a Career
Auditing is the on-site verification of an activity, such as the inspection or examination of a process or quality system, to ensure compliance to requirements. An audit can apply to an entire organization or it might be specific to a function, process, or production step. Auditors are responsible for impartially carrying out the audit, either internally within an organization, or on behalf of a third party certification body.
Service members returning to the civilian workforce may find that numerous military occupational specializations equate to the duties and responsibilities of an auditor. This can typically, but not exclusively, be in the fields of quality, health and safety, environment, or data security.
Many of the core personal skills required to be a good auditor are comparable to those found within a successful career: accuracy, attention to detail, discipline, and resilience, combined with excellent communication skills.
Key competencies for Auditors
There are many qualities that equate to a good auditor but listed below are the key competencies that employers are looking for:
- To be observant, analytical and inquiring by nature
- To be impartial in decision making, resilient to external pressures, and diplomatic in resolving conflicting opinions
- To be articulate, a good listener, to be able to question information and communicate effectively at all levels of an organization
- To be able to accurately translate observations into a report and effectively communicate the audit findings to the audited organization
- To be self-disciplined, well prepared, punctual, and polite.
Process route to Qualification
Decide on whether the employed or self-employed route is best for you and then approach certification bodies accordingly.
Attend a recognized Lead Auditor Course: these are usually five days and will include a written examination. The most common accredited course for potential lead auditors is the CQI/IRCA 9001: 2015 Lead Auditor Course.
Observe and participate in a minimum of ten days of auditing.
Witness audit: Trainee auditor is ‘witnessed’ by an experienced lead auditor preparing, conducting and reporting the full audit cycle.
A three-day Auditor Conversion course exists for most ISO schemes. Once a Lead Auditor Course has been attended and passed, trainee auditors can add further ISO schemes to their portfolio by attending Auditor Conversion courses. Often the training audits and witness audits for these schemes can be combined and your certification body would be able to advise further on your own personal route to qualification based on your experience and the schemes you wish to qualify against.
Benefits of becoming a Certification Auditor
The key benefit of becoming an auditor is that you are transported into a new and interesting career that matches your skill set. More benefits you might like to consider include:
- Certification Bodies are always looking for good auditors with strong sector experience and backgrounds
- Opportunities exist to be either employed or self employed
- Standards are internationally recognized therefore there are auditing opportunities within a global market
- Salary and daily rates are competitive and commensurate with an individual’s levels of expertise and specialism
- Auditing work can take you into many varied organizations, sectors, markets and countries.
But you must
- Be prepared to travel
- Maintain your currency of experience by taking personal responsibility for Continuing Professional Development