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SQF pre-assessment


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#1 QAfood

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 04:22 PM

What does it mean when an audit was changed to pre-assessment from SQF? Just wanted to know if there is a timeline to this, and if we need to complete any open action items that we have. Thank you!



#2 esquef

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 04:57 PM

QAfood,

I don't really understand your question. If you scheduled an actual SQF audit with an approved Certification Body I can't understand how they could change that to a pre-assessment audit. Pre-assessment audits are optional. Are you sure that whoever scheduled the SQF certification audit (document and facility) didn't also schedule a pre-assessment audit? If this is the case it's actually a good thing from a "results point of view", but will set your timeline back a bit.

A pre-assessment audit is essentially a "warm up excercise" for an actual audit. It's generally recommended to have this done by the CB you're using (and specifically the actual auditor scheduled by the CB) to perform the actual certification audit for your facility. In my opinion this gives you your best chance of acheiving good results (auditor consistancy = good).

During the pre-assessment audit the auditor can tell you where your company has non-conformances or gaps in your SQF system but if this is done by your chosen CB for the actual doc & facility audit the auditor can't consult (i.e. spell out exactly what your corrective actions would need to be to become compliant in each non-conformace noted). Best practices can be shared (nudge and a wink).

In my case the pre-assessment audit took place about a month prior to the document audit. The facility audit was done about 2 weeks after the doc audit was finalized.

A bit confusing, I know, but that's the simplest I can put it. Good luck!

Regards,
esquef



#3 QAfood

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:37 PM

Thanks esquef!

They did do a document audit, and then a few weeks did a facility audit (this audit was done in a different site as to where I am-I am the QA for all sites). After the auditor performed an audit site, he then told the Manager that it is best to do a pre-assessment.

I am asking the Manager from this site as to what they agreed upon on this pre-assessment because we have open actions from the document audit and not sure if we still need to complete these. But no one is getting back to me as to what they agreed upon and why they did that. My boss is asking me the status too and have no idea what they did during the audit.

Thank you again for the information.





#4 esquef

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 08:12 PM

Wow, this all sounds really bizarre.

First, the CB can't send an auditor to do a facility audit until everything's okay with the document (or desk) audit. In other words it's up to you to decide if the doc audit is done on-site or if you send the auditor documents he/she requests (I chose the latter and sent the requested docs on a CD by certified mail). If there are any issues you must correct them before the auditor moves on the do the facility audit. So the doc audit is the "say what we do" and during the facility audit the auditor checks to see if you "do what you say you do". It's really the heart of SQF:

1) Say what you do to have a SQF compliant food safety management system (document audit)
2) Do what you say
3) Prove it (facility audit)

Also, I can't for the life of me understand why an auditor would say that you need a pre-assessment audit after the facility audit. Once the facility audit is complete you should recieve an audit report in a matter a a couple of days that gisaves you your audit score and any non-conformances that were recorded. You then have 30 days from the audit date to correct minor NC's and 15 days to correct any majors. Corrective actions done through Quickfire at the time, but now are done through another data portal company called Reliance.

I think you need to talk directly with either the auditor or the Certification Body that the auditor works for to see exactly where you stand.



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#5 SQFconsultant

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 08:31 PM

Once an SQF audit is started it can not be changed to a pre-assessment.

Your message however is confusing to me and thus I am not sure that is exactly what you meant to begin with.

A pre-assessment can be done by a CB Auditor, but only prior to the first audit CB audit series and not mid-stream.

You should clarify this with the CB and SQFI as it is against the SQFI COP for an Auditor/CB to do this.



Glenn Oster

www.GetGoc.com


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Glenn Oster
 
 
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