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Have you experienced an Unannounced Audit?

Unannounced Audit

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Poll: Have you experienced an Unannounced Audit? (187 member(s) have cast votes)

Have you experienced an Unannounced Audit?

  1. Yes (92 votes [49.20%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 49.20%

  2. No (95 votes [50.80%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.80%

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#26 Snookie

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 05:18 PM

Hi Simon,

 

I have an incoming unannounced wal-mart ethical audit in the next 30 days.  I'm concern about it specially I am not confident with the system and documentation practices. Any advice is highly appreciated.

 

Often times ethical audits have to do with employment practices.....do you know the scope of this audit.  My experience with ethical audits is low because for the most part HR was the one to deal with them.  Ethical audits can also be geared towards sourcing.  You need to find out the scope and your Walmart rep will tell you. 


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#27 Loren

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 07:26 PM

Often times ethical audits have to do with employment practices.....do you know the scope of this audit.  My experience with ethical audits is low because for the most part HR was the one to deal with them.  Ethical audits can also be geared towards sourcing.  You need to find out the scope and your Walmart rep will tell you. 

 

Yes, I know the scope, I have a copy of their Standards for Suppliers Manual and Responsible Sourcing Overview and other information from them.

Since this will be my first time dealing with this kind of audit, this is what I am thinking:

 

I will be the contact and would be part of the opening meeting but during document review, I would just call the person who is handling the document?

Do they personally go to offices/personnel who handles the document or they just ask to have the document brought to their room?


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#28 Snookie

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 07:58 PM

Yes, I know the scope, I have a copy of their Standards for Suppliers Manual and Responsible Sourcing Overview and other information from them.

Since this will be my first time dealing with this kind of audit, this is what I am thinking:

 

I will be the contact and would be part of the opening meeting but during document review, I would just call the person who is handling the document?

Do they personally go to offices/personnel who handles the document or they just ask to have the document brought to their room?

 

Set it up so it is convenient for both parties.  Not knowing how your building is laid out, only you can decide what works best.  If all the documents are centrally located then be close to the documents. If divided among different people, make sure they have their documents ready and either they bring them to wherever your holding the audit or go to their audits.   Make sure auditor gets only the documents they ask for an nothing more. 


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#29 Loren

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Posted 24 July 2014 - 11:01 PM

Thank you Snookie. I just talked to the VP an hour ago and told him my concerns, I'm concern about how ready those people can give us the requested document and he seemed not concern about it and told me not to worry about. I think I can relax now :)..


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#30 Charles.C

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 07:56 AM

Thank you Snookie. I just talked to the VP an hour ago and told him my concerns, I'm concern about how ready those people can give us the requested document and he seemed not concern about it and told me not to worry about. I think I can relax now :)..

 

Dear Lorenab,

 

I presume this is a meaningful Chain of Command.

 

I hope you got the assurance in writing / documented. :smile:

 

Rgds / Charles.C
 


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Charles.C


#31 cazyncymru

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Posted 11 August 2014 - 08:28 AM

Lorenab

 

I've just had my (un)ethical audit

 

They will want to interview a cross section of employees, walk around your facility to ensure you have facilities (toilets, canteen etc) will want to see that the people you employ are permitted to be employed (passports, birth certificates etc) They'll also ask to see peoples pay slips (if those people so permit)

 

Document wise they'll want to see your liability insurance, COSHH register, waste licences, environmental policy and ethical policy.

 

It's not that painful really.

 

Caz x


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#32 Loren

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Posted 12 August 2014 - 11:09 PM

I just want to update regarding the unannounced Walmart Ethical Audit that we have. It was already done and we got the Green rating.

 

Regards,

Lorena


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#33 Snookie

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Posted 15 August 2014 - 08:35 PM

I just want to update regarding the unannounced Walmart Ethical Audit that we have. It was already done and we got the Green rating.

 

Regards,

Lorena

 

Although are generally fairly easy for those of us in US and EU with a decent HR department, it still is nice to have it done and pass. 


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#34 immigratedavian

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Posted 15 August 2014 - 08:56 PM

I have involved in such audits, any way this is against the audit values,


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#35 Charles.C

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Posted 18 August 2014 - 07:39 AM

Although are generally fairly easy for those of us in US and EU with a decent HR department, it still is nice to have it done and pass. 

 

slightly OT

 

Dear Snookie,

 

Out of curiosity, is there some kind of FDA Reference for Ethics, eg as per post #31.?

 

i always thought the Ethics of most Businesses are based on Regulations and the "bottom line" ? :smile:

 

eg -

 

http://www.nytimes.c...wanted=all&_r=0

 

Rgds / Charles.C


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Charles.C


#36 Snookie

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 01:47 AM

slightly OT

 

Dear Snookie,

 

Out of curiosity, is there some kind of FDA Reference for Ethics, eg as per post #31.?

 

i always thought the Ethics of most Businesses are based on Regulations and the "bottom line" ? :smile:

 

eg -

 

http://www.nytimes.c...wanted=all&_r=0

 

Rgds / Charles.C

There is not an FDA requirement.  Employment issues are handled under other agencies.  Most companies are compliant, although there was recently a firm in Los Angeles  which got in trouble for holding Chinese people hostage at their factory.  Bottom line is definitely the  motivator and the cost of an attorney really damages the bottom line. 

 

I found the link you provided very interesting, however think forcing ethics is usually not successful.  To me it is analogous to the US experiment with prohibition which was a miserable failure.  You cannot legislate morality, and passing a law may feel good, but can't encompass all of the possibilities.  When my children were babies they had an extremely high metabolism.  It was very hard to get enough calories in them for them to gain weight, especially in a grocery store full of things like non-fat yogurt.  Every thing was aimed at losing weight not gaining weight especially when discussing healthy calories.   Banning a large soda isn't the solution.  If a person really wants that much soda, then they will pay more for several smaller ones.  Which may be the point to make more money for the companies.  Personally when I go the movies with my kids we buy one large soda and share....its 1/3rd the price and we still get the same amount. 

 

There was interesting documentary on PBS (Public Broadcast Service) which discussed the rise in obesity and linked it to the rise of corn syrup.  The best solution is we the consumer to vote with our dollars and force healthier choices by our purchasing power, not the with a law.  :cool:   But especially those of us in areas where much of our food is shipped in and in metropolitan areas, combined with busy schedules make processed food an attractive option and usually a cheaper one.  Ultimately we have to realize that we "can't have it all" and make our choices accordingly.  :uhm:


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#37 GMO

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 06:02 AM

There were specifics on the ethical about fire training, frequency of evacuation practices, employee forums etc.  Tbh we left the General Manager to it, not that he knows how to do the audit.  The auditor was left on their own for a while apparently (I was on holiday for once, yay!)  But given the chance they'd offload the ethical audit onto Technical.  Because it has 'audit' in the title I guess?  Next we'll be looking after the financial auditors!


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#38 Charles.C

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 08:40 AM

There is not an FDA requirement.  Employment issues are handled under other agencies.  Most companies are compliant, although there was recently a firm in Los Angeles  which got in trouble for holding Chinese people hostage at their factory.  Bottom line is definitely the  motivator and the cost of an attorney really damages the bottom line.

                                    Definitely    :off_topic:

Dear Snookie,

 

Thks for the input. Interesting thoughts.

 

TBH, I thought the “hostages” episode was simply “criminal” rather than “unethical” but I’m not too sure where the dividing line is.? Perhaps there isn’t one.

 

Business ethics seems to have a giant class of its own (there’s a surprise), eg

 

http://en.wikipedia....Business_ethics

 

And then again, Ethics vs Morals, eg –

http://www.wisegeek....-and-morals.htm

 

I recall that corn syrup was once described as the best gift to the food industry since sliced bread, although, ahem –

http://www.urbandict...ce sliced bread

 

It’s all so very confusing. A useful challenge for the  FSMA perhaps?

 

Rgds / Charles.C


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Charles.C


#39 Snookie

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Posted 19 August 2014 - 04:38 PM

Yes it is all so confusing :uhm: .  But it is one of the things that make life interesting.  Although don't think the FSMA is truly up to the task.  At the heart of the issue is how to make food safe, while keeping it affordable.  When is government too much and not enough?  I suggest an extended meeting with some good food, and adult beverages to further analyze the challenges.  :beer:


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#40 Prunesquallor

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Posted 22 September 2014 - 03:46 PM

A couple of our major customers do unannounced audits - not very pleasant but part of the requirements of being a supplier to the UK supermarkets.

We also have to have unannounced BRC audits to keep another customer happy.

Keeps us on our toes.


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#41 Simon

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Posted 16 December 2015 - 06:52 PM

The Co-operative (large UK retailer) is now requiring unannounced BRC audits as standard for their supply base.  

 

More and more will go down this route until it's the norm.


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#42 esquef

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Posted 14 March 2016 - 09:02 PM

Our 2015 annual SQF recertification audit was unannounced (we requested it to our CB). The only differences to an announced audit were:

- Obviously you don't know exactly when the auditor will shop, but you have a +/- 30 day (from your initial certification audit date) window.

- The auditor made a beeline to the plant to look for policy violations (primarily GMP issues), and once that was done the audit was like our previous 4 audits.

So if you and your Production and Sanitation Management teams are doing their part in ensuring that your facility is audit ready all the time (particularly within your window!), it wasn't a big deal at all.


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#43 sdavies2008

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:12 PM

GMP type audits are always unannounced for snacks but announced for beverages group. You can see the difference in the scores. Corporate (one person) schedules all the audits and nobody knows when the auditor will be there.

The move now is to have GFSI audits unannounced.

 

I think audits should be unannounced as it gives a better indication on the actual status of the plant in paperwork and GMP's

Sarah


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#44 GMO

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:32 PM

The Co-operative (large UK retailer) is now requiring unannounced BRC audits as standard for their supply base.  

 

More and more will go down this route until it's the norm.

 

And Asda, Iceland... Waitrose were thinking about it.  I'd accept it, take a deep breath and move on.  At least there's no more mad few weeks leading up to the audit!


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#45 Watanka

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Posted 04 May 2016 - 03:42 PM

Yes - several in fact.  The unannounced audit has created opportunities (along with some tension) to improve our practices and bring quality systems to heart.  Overall I believe it is a good idea, but worry about being ill or away from work when they show up.  When the auditor(s) arrive we put them in a conference room to conduct a pre-audit meeting, usually lasting no more than 20 minutes.  We check their credentials, ask them to explain the scope of the audit, methodology, how we can best meet their needs, etc.  Then off to the races we go. 


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#46 GMO

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Posted 01 February 2017 - 09:02 AM

Yes - several in fact.  The unannounced audit has created opportunities (along with some tension) to improve our practices and bring quality systems to heart.  Overall I believe it is a good idea, but worry about being ill or away from work when they show up.  When the auditor(s) arrive we put them in a conference room to conduct a pre-audit meeting, usually lasting no more than 20 minutes.  We check their credentials, ask them to explain the scope of the audit, methodology, how we can best meet their needs, etc.  Then off to the races we go. 

 

This is why it's absolutely necessary to have at least two people who can lead an audit, preferably three.  Who knows when you will have two unannounced auditors turn up at once for example anyway?


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#47 SJH.007

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Posted 01 February 2017 - 09:43 PM

In actual fact I had an unannounced audit today by the FSA, two inspectors!

Eventually unannounced audits will become the base standard for all retailers and certification bodies. They are a double edged sword; challenging as they can catch you off guard and there is no preparation time, but it keeps the factory on their toes and positive results are great for reputability and integrity. It's probably the best method for promoting an "audit ready" culture.


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#48 DLH

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Posted 26 July 2017 - 07:25 PM

We have not had one yet but know a three month window of when it could happen early next year. 


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#49 IchBinGnade

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Posted 27 July 2017 - 12:43 AM

Yes, plenty of times already. It became a learning ground for us to sustain a the documentation and actual practices.


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