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BRC 3.4 and ISO 4.14 - Independent Auditor

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#1 Remi.Trepanier


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Posted 15 September 2017 - 06:20 PM

Good Morning, I have a question concerning BRC 3.4 and ISO 4.14



BRC 3.4.2

Internal audits shall be carried out by appropriately trained, competent auditors. Auditors shall be independent (i.e. not audit their own work).


ISO 4.14 Such audits shall be carried out by trained and qualified personnel who are, wherever

resources permit, independent of the activity to be audited.


As the QA Manager, I do not do any tasks the QA Technicians do and QA Technician don't do what I am doing. I asked the BRC Internal Auditor trainer if I could audit the QA Technicians and she said that I would not be independent. On the other side, I asked the ISO17025 Internal Auditor Trainer and he said that I can audit the QA Technicians. The trainer need to be qualified, which means that they must have some laboratory knowledge. Many SOP are internlink and reflect both BRC and ISO requirements. If I do the audit, BRC might say I am not independent, but as per ISO, I am the only one that could do the audit.


I also have another concern, I don't think that other department will want or take the time to do proper audits.


What are your thoughts?


Thank you

#2 Tony-C


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Posted 16 September 2017 - 07:29 AM

Hi Remi,


The BRC Internal Audit Trainer is correct  'Internal auditors may not audit their own work or programmes they are immediately responsible for' (BRC Guidance).


This is a problem many people encounter. Ideally you need to get Senior Management on board and get more trained Internal Auditors. If they are reluctant to help then point out the requirements of the standard and the risk of being pulled up with a Non-compliance.


Kind regards,



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#3 CMHeywood


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Posted 25 September 2017 - 02:37 PM

The issue is that the QA Techs report to you so you are not completely independent.

#4 Gerard H.

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Posted 26 September 2017 - 08:03 AM

Hello Remi,


It's valid for the department(s) where you are responsible or working for. That raises some practical questions indeed.


The challenge is to find a good auditor to audit your department. This new auditor, can't consequently audit his or her department.


Kind regards,


Gerard Heerkens

#5 GMO


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Posted 26 September 2017 - 08:04 AM

It's tricky.  For the HACCP plan, someone who directly or indirectly reports into me does audit that plan but I have no-one else with the skills and independence to do it.  I could pay lipservice to it and have someone with HACCP level 2 from production auditing one site and vice versa but in reality what will they pick up?  5 tenths of b*gger all.  I've never had anyone raise this as an issue but I could understand if they did.  Likewise though I'd need someone at least trained to Level 3 who isn't in the HACCP team already which is a massive waste of money.

#6 trubertq


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Posted 20 October 2017 - 02:54 PM

That's why people contract ME!!!!!

I'm entitled to my opinion, even a stopped clock is right twice a day

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