Audit management and audit management software

Audit management: implementing audits efficiently

In a world where quality, compliance and efficiency are essential, audits play a central role. But how can organisations ensure that their systems, processes, products or suppliers meet the right standards?

Here come Audits, audit management and audit management software come into play. These three elements are the cornerstones for ensuring quality, regulatory compliance and continuous improvement. In this blog post, you will learn how audits are carried out and how audit management and audit management software can provide support.

Key information on audit management

  • Audits are used to check adherence to quality standards, compliance with regulations and the efficiency of processes. They help to identify risks and develop measures for continuous improvement.
  • When conducting audits, those responsible must ensure compliance with Audit principles such as integrity, independence, objectivity, etc. to ensure the quality of the audit process.
  • The Audit management covers the planning, preparation, implementation and follow-up of audits. It ensures that audits are carried out effectively and objectively and that quality standards are met.
  • Audit management software rationalises the entire audit process. It supports the planning, preparation, execution and documentation of audits, offers analysis and reporting functions and improves the efficiency of audit management.
  • Audits, audit management and audit management software are used in a wide range of industriesincluding healthcare, finance, manufacturing, compliance and environmental management to ensure quality and compliance.

Whitepaper Audit management: Implementing audits efficiently

Whitepaper: Implementing a Directory of Processing Activities in compliance with the GDPR

In the white paper "Audit Management: Implementing audits efficiently" you will find:

  • Background and definitions of the audit and the Audit management
  • Information on Audit types and the Audit principles
  • Step-by-step process of an audit from preparation to follow-up
  • Notes on Responsibilities and the Roles in audit management

This document is currently only available in German. Please feel free to contact us for more information.

What is audit management?

The Audit management refers to the planning, organisation and implementation of inspections or audits in an organisation.

The Objective of audit management is to ensure efficiency, transparency and compliance within an organisation. This is particularly important in areas such as finance, quality control, environmental protection and information security, where compliance with standards and regulations is crucial. It also helps to strengthen risk management and stakeholder confidence in the organisation.

The Audit management typically comprises the following steps Audit planning, implementation of the audit, documentation and reporting as well as follow-up.

There will be Internal audits, external audits and certification audits are differentiated. Internal audits are carried out by internal employees to assess processes and compliance. External audits are carried out by independent external auditors to check compliance with regulations and standards. Certification audits are external audits that serve to certify conformity with internationally recognised standards.

What is an audit?

Different standardisation landscapes also offer different definitions of the term audit.  However, the word "audit" is basically derived from the Latin "audire" and can be translated as "to hear" or "to listen". In a broader sense, it therefore refers to a conversation between two parties, i.e. a Targeted, systematic exchange of information.

In the DIN EN ISO 19011:2018-10 The audit is defined as follows: "Systematic, formal, independent and documented examination to assess the extent to which requirements for a system, process or product are fulfilled."

A audit is a systematic review, investigation or audit of a particular process, system, organisation or set of information.

Audits can be conducted in a variety of contexts, including finance, compliance, quality control, environmental protection, information security and more.

During an audit, information is usually collected, analysed and evaluated to determine whether there are any deviations or problems. A final report is prepared that summarises the results of the audit and contains recommendations for improvement or the elimination of deficiencies.

The Main objective of an audit is to ensure compliance with certain regulations, standards, procedures or quality requirements and to assess the integrity and reliability of the elements audited. However, audits serve several purposes:

  • Quality assurance: Audits ensure compliance with quality standards in order to guarantee product and service quality.
  • Compliance: They help to ensure compliance with laws, regulations and internal guidelines.
  • Efficiency and effectiveness: Audits identify opportunities for process optimisation and cost control.
  • Risk management: They help to identify and manage risks.
  • Transparency and trust: Audits create trust among stakeholders and customers through the disclosure of audit results.
  • Continuous improvement: They serve as the basis for measures for continuous improvement.
  • Safety: In safety-critical areas such as aviation, audits ensure that safety standards are adhered to.
  • Documentation: You create written evidence of the test results and measures for subsequent verification.

What types of audit are there?

There are different types of audits, which are carried out in different organisational contexts depending on their purpose and scope. In addition to the audit types listed below, there are also process audits, customer audits, performance audits, compliance audits and environmental audits

A system audit is a comprehensive review and evaluation of an entire system or a series of processes and procedures in an organisation. A system audit is an instrument for assessing the effectiveness of a management system with regard to the fulfilment of the respective regulations.

The main objective of a system audit is to ensure that the entire system or structure of an organisation is functioning properly and meets the defined standards, quality requirements and objectives.

Further objectives of system audits:

  • Recording the ACTUAL state
  • Detection of non-conformities
  • Identification of causes and elimination of non-conformities
  • Identification of potential for improvement
  • Employee sensitisation
  • Evaluation of the installed management system (suitability, effectiveness, degree of maturity)
  • Provision of information for management

Examples of system audits:

  • Quality management system audit
  • Environmental management system audit
  • Information security management system audit
  • Risk management system audit
  • IT system audit

A process audit is a special type of audit in which the procedures, practices and processes in an organisation are reviewed and evaluated. The main objective of a process audit is to ensure that processes are efficient, effective and compliant with internal standards, quality requirements and established procedures. Process audits are often conducted in companies, organisations and manufacturing companies to ensure quality, productivity and compliance with standards.

Examples of process audits are

  • Information security audit
  • Compliance audit
  • IT audit
  • Personnel management audit
  • Marketing audit

A product audit is a special type of audit in which an organisation's products or services are systematically tested and evaluated. The main objective of a product audit is to ensure that the products manufactured or services provided meet quality standards, specifications and customer requirements. This is particularly important to ensure product quality and to strengthen customer confidence in the organisation.

Examples of industries in which product audits are usually carried out:

  • Automotive industry
  • Food industry
  • Pharmaceutical industry
  • Clothing and textile industry
  • Consumer goods industry

A supplier audit, also known as a supplier review or supplier assessment, is a systematic review and evaluation of suppliers or external service providers by an organisation. The main objective of a supplier audit is to ensure that suppliers fulfil the agreed standards, quality requirements and contractual obligations. This is particularly important to ensure the quality of the products or services supplied and to minimise the risk of supplier problems.

We audit your management systems

Use an audit to determine how your organisation performs in the area of Data protection, ISMS or Compliance is set up. The current status is analysed and documented by our TÜV / DEKRA-certified consultants in your company in order to check the conformity of implemented measures, identify possible risks and derive further recommendations for measures.

What does an audit process look like?

The Audit process may vary depending on the type of audit and the specific requirements. An audit is divided into the sub-areas of planning or preparation, implementation and follow-up. The results of an audit are summarised in a final report, which contains recommendations for measures to improve or rectify deficiencies. Possible steps for an audit process can be found below:

  1. Creation of an audit plan
  2. Definition of audit targets
  3. Definition of the test criteria
  4. Scheduling of the audit
  1. Determination of the scope of the audit
  2. Creation of checklists
  3. Selection of the audit team
  4. Provision of funds and derivation of authorisation
  5. Contacting the area to be audited
  6. Gathering information about the area to be inspected
  7. Identify risks in advance to check audit alignment
  1. Opening discussion
  2. Interviews, talks, discussions
  3. Review of documents and processes
  4. Data acquisition and analysis
  5. Tracking of processes and random samples on all relevant thematic and organisational topics
  6. Verifications, observations, measurements
  7. Evaluation of the information collected
  8. Identification of deviations compared to the test criteria
  9. Discussion of results and final meeting

Useful tools: Questionnaires, checklists based on the underlying regulations

  1. Audit report, incl. deviations from test criteria and results
    • Suggestions for improvement, feedback and recommended measures
    • Minor deviation (individual errors, deviations or deficiencies in the implementation of the standard requirement)
    • Major deviation (significant doubt about the capability of the management system)
  2. Monitoring the implementation of recommended measures
  3. Optional: Re-examination / re-audit
  4. Managing proof of compliance
  5. Documentation of the audit report and activities in connection with the audit
  6. Follow-up audits

What audit principles are there?

The audit principles are fundamental guidelines and concepts that form the basis for conducting audits. They help to ensure the integrity, objectivity and effectiveness of the audit process. Here are some important audit principles:

Integrity: The auditor should act sincerely and honestly, and their actions should be based on ethical principles. Integrity is crucial for the credibility of the audit process.

Objectivity: The auditor should fulfil his tasks without bias and neutrality. Objectivity ensures a fair and unbiased audit.

Competence: The auditor should have the necessary knowledge, skills and experience to fulfil the task effectively. Expertise ensures the quality of the audit.

Confidentiality: Information collected during the audit should be kept confidential to protect sensitive data and maintain the integrity of the audit process.

Independence: The auditor should be free from influences that could affect their objective judgement. Independence promotes the integrity and credibility of the audit.

Evidence-based approach: The results of an audit should be based on verifiable evidence to ensure the credibility and consistency of the conclusions.

Risk orientation: Audits should focus on the identification and assessment of risks to ensure that audit resources are utilised effectively.

Sustainability: Audits should promote long-term effects and improvements and not just offer short-term solutions.

Who is responsible for carrying out audits?

The responsibility for conducting audits depends on the type of audit and the context. Key actors for audits are auditors (internal and external), audit managers and generally the management level of the organisation.

A Auditor is responsible for planning, conducting and evaluating audits. The main tasks of an auditor include checking processes, documentation and evidence, assessing compliance with standards and identifying potential for improvement. There are internal and external auditors.

Internal auditors are employed by organisations to carry out internal audits. These auditors are usually part of the internal audit department and are responsible for carrying out audits in various areas of the organisation to ensure compliance with standards and quality requirements.

External auditors are independent audit firms or external auditors commissioned by the organisation. External auditors are responsible for checking compliance with standards and regulations and have an external view of the organisation.

A Audit Manager is a senior person in a company or organisation who is responsible for the management and direction of the overall audit function. The main responsibilities of an audit manager include planning and organising audits, assigning tasks to auditors, ensuring compliance with quality standards and professional diligence, communicating audit results to management and identifying opportunities for continuous improvement of audit processes. An Audit Manager helps to ensure that the audit function operates efficiently and effectively and fulfils legal requirements and company policies.

The Management level of the organisation is responsible for implementing measures to rectify deficiencies identified during an audit. They must ensure that the results of the audits are taken into account appropriately and contribute to continuous improvement.

We audit your management systems

Use an audit to determine how your organisation performs in the area of Data protection, ISMS or Compliance is set up. The current status is analysed and documented by our TÜV / DEKRA-certified consultants in your company in order to check the conformity of implemented measures, identify possible risks and derive further recommendations for measures.

What is audit management software?

Audit management software is a software solution that supports and manages the audit process in organisations. This software automates many aspects of audit management and facilitates the planning, execution, documentation and tracking of audits. Audit management software can be customised to an organisation's specific requirements and is widely used in various industries, including quality control, compliance, environmental management and many others.

Here are some of the main features of audit management software:

  • Audit planning: The audit management software enables the definition of audit types, criteria or parameters for the audit, procedures and schedules.
  • Audit preparation: Auditors can allocate personnel resources for the audit team in the software. The software facilitates the management of files, attachments, evidence and assessments. It enables the documentation of documents and communication with responsible persons. Some solutions offer functions for identifying and assessing risks to ensure that audits are focussed on critical areas.
  • Audit performance: Standards can be compared with organisational evidence in the software. Auditors can assign tasks to responsible persons. Initial results can be stored and the current status of the audit can be maintained.
  • Audit follow-up: The audit management software enables the creation and documentation of final reports and the communication of audit results and recommended measures to responsible persons. The software also supports the tracking and documentation of measures to rectify deficiencies identified during an audit. It enables the implementation of improvement measures to be tracked. The software can manage compliance audits and evidence to ensure that the organisation complies with applicable laws, regulations and quality standards. Audit management software enables audit results to be analysed and trends in identified risks to be identified over time.

Video audit management with Robin Data ComplianceOS®

In the video Audit management with Robin Data ComplianceOS® you will find:

Regular internal and external audits are an important control mechanism for your management system. Good planning and systematic preparation are required for your audits to succeed efficiently. With Robin Data ComplianceOS®, you benefit from a consistent link between the relevant data and the requirements of your control system as well as a consistent assessment of the maturity level.

Find out what requirements there are for effective audit management and how you can solve them with Robin Data ComplianceOS® in the recording of the Robin Data Hack from 14 November 2023.

The Robin Data Hacks take place online and participation is free of charge. Further information, dates and the opportunity to register.

Unfortunately this content is currently only available in German. Please feel free to contact us for more information.


Overall, the topic Audit, audit management and audit management software of great importance for organisations in various sectors. Audits play a central role in ensuring quality, compliance, efficiency and risk management. They help to ensure that processes and products meet the necessary standards and requirements and provide a mechanism for continuous improvement.

The Audit management includes the planning, execution and monitoring of audits to ensure that they are carried out effectively and objectively. This requires careful planning, the selection of suitable individuals within the audit team and consideration of audit principles such as integrity, independence and objectivity.

Audit management software is a valuable technology that automates and rationalises the entire audit process. It facilitates the planning, execution, documentation and follow-up of audits, thereby increasing efficiency. The use of software also provides powerful analytics and reporting capabilities to gain insights from audit findings.

In summary, we can say that audits and the associated management play a crucial role in ensuring quality and compliance in organisations. The integration of audit management software can streamline the audit process and increase efficiency. This is of great importance as organisations operate in an increasingly complex and regulated business environment where quality and compliance are critical.

Robin Data ComplianceOS® Field Audit Management

Audit management enables you to optimise organisational systems or processes. Evaluate and improve the effectiveness of management systems and controls from legal requirements and industry standards. Identify risks through audits and manage activities to mitigate them. Work collaboratively with all responsible persons in one place. Establish effective audit processes and achieve organisational goals effectively.

Caroline Schwabe

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