Jump to content

  • Quick Navigation
Photo
- - - - -

Customers requesting SQF Audit Report


  • You cannot start a new topic
  • Please log in to reply
19 replies to this topic

Kosterkeunen

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 5 posts
  • 0 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 February 2021 - 08:08 PM

Hi all, we are newly SQF certified and have a few customers repeatedly asking for a copy of our audit report.  My first instinct is that it is none of their business but being new to the program, I wonder what the industry standard is... Is it common practice to share audit reports with customers? Thanks in advance! Liz

 

 



Monin1912

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 1 posts
  • 1 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 February 2021 - 08:13 PM

It is not uncommon.  We have customers that request the full audit and corrective action report.  We provide as long as we have a non disclosure agreement with that customer.



Thanked by 1 Member:

Kosterkeunen

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 5 posts
  • 0 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 February 2021 - 08:16 PM

Thanks for the quick reply.  That's helpful!



Scampi

    Fellow

  • IFSQN Fellow
  • 4,057 posts
  • 1114 thanks
792
Excellent

  • Canada
    Canada
  • Gender:Not Telling

Posted 17 February 2021 - 08:24 PM

And it depends on $$$$$$$. If this is a huge customer that you don't want to upset, then yes (non disclosure agreement first)

 

If the customer is small potatoes and causes your company more grief that ease, perhaps insist it is not your company policy to disclose the audit report.


Please stop referring to me as Sir/sirs


Thanked by 1 Member:

Kosterkeunen

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 5 posts
  • 0 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 17 February 2021 - 08:26 PM

Also good info!  Good point!



Charles.C

    Grade - FIFSQN

  • IFSQN Moderator
  • 19,111 posts
  • 5315 thanks
1,281
Excellent

  • Earth
    Earth
  • Gender:Male
  • Interests:SF
    TV
    Movies

Posted 17 February 2021 - 10:27 PM

Also good info!  Good point!

 

Hi Liz,

 

It's indeed none of their business unless they have "Leverage".


Kind Regards,

 

Charles.C


Thanked by 1 Member:

Kosterkeunen

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 5 posts
  • 0 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 18 February 2021 - 12:58 PM

Thanks Charles!



kfromNE

    Grade - PIFSQN

  • IFSQN Principal
  • 690 posts
  • 204 thanks
182
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Interests:Bicycling, reading, nutrition, trivia

Posted 18 February 2021 - 04:42 PM

Hi All,

 

We are newly SQF certified and have a few customers repeatedly asking for a copy of our audit report.  My first instinct is that it is none of their business but being new to the program, I wonder what the industry standard is... 

 

Is it common practice to share audit reports with customers?

 

Thanks in advance!

Liz

We do ask for it. It depends on how the customer is controlling the hazard. If the supplier (you) is controlling it then yes, we as a food manufacturer do ask for it.

 

This all comes down to FDA supplier verification and how manufacturing companies are controlling the hazards. For FSMA inspections a certificate won't cut it nor a LOG.

 

I would ask them what they need it for. You may be able to provide them just parts of it or something else.

 

For us we get the audits to prove the supplier is controlling the hazards rather than a getting a CoA for every order, another option. 

 

If it's a cooking step - you don't have to give the exact temperature but rather say greater than a specific temp.



Thanked by 1 Member:

chrkut

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 23 posts
  • 8 thanks
11
Good

  • Earth
    Earth

Posted 18 February 2021 - 05:23 PM

Also, please be aware, if the customer wants to be able to sell to Costco, it is a part of their addendum that it is required to have their vendor's SQF audit report. Which makes it fully their business. 



Thanked by 1 Member:

Kosterkeunen

    Grade - Active

  • IFSQN Active
  • 5 posts
  • 0 thanks
0
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 18 February 2021 - 09:13 PM

This forum is an awesome resource.  Thanks everyone for your input!



SQFconsultant

    SQFconsultant

  • IFSQN Fellow
  • 3,821 posts
  • 960 thanks
852
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Male
  • Interests:American Patriot
    WWG1WGA
    Never give up, never give in - always win!
    Martha's Vineyard Island, Massachusetts

Posted 18 February 2021 - 09:46 PM

We send tge entire audit to anyone.


Kind regards,
Glenn Oster
 
GOC BUSINESS GROUP | SQF System Development, Implementation & Certification Consultants
Internal Auditor Training - eConsultant - Pre & Post SQF-GAP Audits - Consultant Training
Visit us @ http://www.GlennOster.com  or call us @ 772.646.4115 US-EST 8am-4pm Anyday except Thursday
 
 

Bo16

    Grade - AIFSQN

  • IFSQN Associate
  • 44 posts
  • 12 thanks
8
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 25 February 2021 - 04:23 PM

We send our BRC audit report and certificate to any customer that asks for it.  We have redacted proprietary information when necessary (filtration size, ingredients etc.) if they were in the audit and we tell our customers why.  We did ask our auditor to sanitize exact names of products, not put any customer/supplier names into the report and except for our process controls (specifics redacted, not verification activities) they were able to keep them out of the report.  If the customer requires the unredacted report, well we have never been asked for it, but I'm sure then we would be talking about a non-disclosure agreement.



TimG

    Grade - PIFSQN

  • IFSQN Principal
  • 641 posts
  • 185 thanks
305
Excellent

  • United States
    United States

Posted 25 February 2021 - 04:44 PM

We (both this facility and our other global facilities) do not send our inspection/audit reports to customers. The executive committee felt as you do, that it's none of their business. We provide the passing score sheet only.

 

Pro: I don't have random 2 pallet per year buyers asking to see proof of all abatements from findings and then arguing that even though the certifying body accepted it, they don't, and 'require' me to do X/Y/Z.

 

Con: I have that same random 2 pallet per year buyer now asking me to complete a 20 EXCEL tab 500+ questionnaire because we don't provide them the report.

 

I feel it still works out better for us this way, but we're a bit different in that we manufacture HUNDREDS of thousands of pounds per week of product and our most vocal customers are the ones that buy 2-20 pallets per year.



jkoratich712

    Grade - MIFSQN

  • IFSQN Member
  • 88 posts
  • 15 thanks
15
Good

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Interests:Food, books, bakeries, coffee, HACCP, sanitation

Posted 26 February 2021 - 03:06 PM

We made the business decision last year to no longer provide our full audit report due to the potential for proprietary information in it and who it may be shared with (even with an NDA). This decision came after the FDA requested a copy of one of our suppliers 3rd party audit report during a FSMA inspection. We are open to discussion with our customers to review our audit findings and will provide our certificate. The reality is, I feel very few people actually read through the full 40+ pages, so why do they need it other then to check the box that they have it. 



YNA QA

    Grade - MIFSQN

  • IFSQN Member
  • 72 posts
  • 12 thanks
22
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Kentucky
  • Interests:Crochet, Reading, Animals, Football

Posted 26 February 2021 - 07:06 PM

 And it's always the random 2 pallet a year companies with these 500+ word questionnaires.  I got one yesterday (and they wanted the full audit in addition to it!!)

 

 

We (both this facility and our other global facilities) do not send our inspection/audit reports to customers. The executive committee felt as you do, that it's none of their business. We provide the passing score sheet only.

 

Pro: I don't have random 2 pallet per year buyers asking to see proof of all abatements from findings and then arguing that even though the certifying body accepted it, they don't, and 'require' me to do X/Y/Z.

 

Con: I have that same random 2 pallet per year buyer now asking me to complete a 20 EXCEL tab 500+ questionnaire because we don't provide them the report.

 

I feel it still works out better for us this way, but we're a bit different in that we manufacture HUNDREDS of thousands of pounds per week of product and our most vocal customers are the ones that buy 2-20 pallets per year.



TimG

    Grade - PIFSQN

  • IFSQN Principal
  • 641 posts
  • 185 thanks
305
Excellent

  • United States
    United States

Posted 09 March 2021 - 04:05 PM

 And it's always the random 2 pallet a year companies with these 500+ word questionnaires.  I got one yesterday (and they wanted the full audit in addition to it!!)

 

Yeah, one of my suppliers actually had a pretty ingenious reply to my questionnaire. A 'response packet' that had a nicely worded document on letterhead which said when summed up "we ain't got time for that but we will give you a bunch of info" that came in a packet of 25 documents.

One day I'll get the time to put one together for my customers, I think it's a pretty smart way to go about it.



Bo16

    Grade - AIFSQN

  • IFSQN Associate
  • 44 posts
  • 12 thanks
8
Neutral

  • United States
    United States

Posted 31 March 2021 - 07:12 PM

Many of our suppliers have that "document" of documents and will not fill out more than the cursory information and signature in our questionnaires and state "see allergen...etc" statement.  We find these documents usually give us all the information we needed on our questionnaire, and I guess that's the purpose of them, but not always.  We have to check the documents against our required information and then we accept it.  Wouldn't it be nice if our bench marked audits and a document package would be enough for all our customers?  We rarely refuse to fill out customer forms and some will take our prepared documents instead but it is on a case by case basis. 

 

Then there's the other "certifiers, list makers" information needy groups for marketing claims......  never ending.  



Ryan M.

    Grade - FIFSQN

  • IFSQN Fellow
  • 1,262 posts
  • 456 thanks
258
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Birmingham, AL
  • Interests:Reading, crosswords, passionate discussions, laughing at US politics.

Posted 31 March 2021 - 09:42 PM

Your third-party audit reports should not have specific vendor or customer names in them.  There really shouldn't be any sensitive information in your third-party audit reports, but if so redact it.  I've never had a problem sharing ours with the corrective actions.  I can't recall a customer who received the report and corrective actions ask me follow-up questions about the content of the report or proof of corrective actions.

 

That's why we do these audits.....food safety should not be held closely to the vest, it should be shared whenever and wherever possible.



jkoratich712

    Grade - MIFSQN

  • IFSQN Member
  • 88 posts
  • 15 thanks
15
Good

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Female
  • Interests:Food, books, bakeries, coffee, HACCP, sanitation

Posted 31 March 2021 - 09:54 PM

We felt the same way for a while and freely shared our 3rd party audit report (with an NDA). It wasn't until the FDA requested copies of our suppliers 3rd party audit reports that we changed our corporate policy. We area also very understanding of our suppliers who don't share their 3rd party audit reports. 

 

Your third-party audit reports should not have specific vendor or customer names in them.  There really shouldn't be any sensitive information in your third-party audit reports, but if so redact it.  I've never had a problem sharing ours with the corrective actions.  I can't recall a customer who received the report and corrective actions ask me follow-up questions about the content of the report or proof of corrective actions.

 

That's why we do these audits.....food safety should not be held closely to the vest, it should be shared whenever and wherever possible.



Ryan M.

    Grade - FIFSQN

  • IFSQN Fellow
  • 1,262 posts
  • 456 thanks
258
Excellent

  • United States
    United States
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Birmingham, AL
  • Interests:Reading, crosswords, passionate discussions, laughing at US politics.

Posted 31 March 2021 - 10:01 PM

We felt the same way for a while and freely shared our 3rd party audit report (with an NDA). It wasn't until the FDA requested copies of our suppliers 3rd party audit reports that we changed our corporate policy. We area also very understanding of our suppliers who don't share their 3rd party audit reports.


You can tell the FDA they have to come to your facility to view the report and they cannot make copies. This is sensitive supplier information. Alternatively, you can redact the supplier name and other information.

But again, this goes back to sharing of food safety information and best practices. I suppose if I found us in that situation and shared the supplier audit report I would immediately inform the supplier as they may have an inspector on the way. Realistically, if you pass a GFSI third party audit you are overwhelmingly compliant with regulations, right?





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users