ISO 9001 Auditing: Types, Steps and Requirements

If you’re in the manufacturing business then getting it right the first time is a big deal. Nobody wants to spend energy, time and resources to produce a product that isn’t up to the standard. And so business owners use IQM to ensure that their products are in line with ISO 9001:2015 standards.

What is ISO 9001 certification and why do you need it? ISO 9001 is an internationally recognized quality management standard and is the most widely implemented quality management system standard in the world.

It provides a set of requirements and guidelines for a quality management system where organizations can demonstrate their ability to consistently provide products and services that meet customer and applicable statutory and regulatory requirements, and that continually improves the effectiveness of their QMS.

An iso 9001 auditing helps users to identify problematic areas and how to get rid of them and help their customers with statutory and regulatory requirements of the company. An ISO 9001 standards family is used to help you make a better system within your company and organization. It is a documented and objective process that gathers information and helps to improve it using the best practices and processes.

Types of iso 9001 auditing


Internal iso 9001 auditing means auditing conducted by the company itself by one of the management team staff. The internal auditor should check all the procedures, and objectives within the company and make sure that the policies comply with the documented ones in standards of the Quality Management System.

To identify errors and mistakes in your company you can check them by comparing the procedures per the standard and the ones your company is doing. To improve, record those observations and look for ways to better them with the help of regular meetings with all your management team and by taking their opinions. These meetings should be held at least 4 times a year before the yearly ISO 9001 audit.

This also helps the ISO auditors who check the records and look for any misstatements. 


External auditors for ISO 9001 are selected by the shareholders to look for any mistakes in any sector of the company. They are used to help you find those mistakes and look for ways to better them by supplying you with the right procedures. External auditors have the right to check any sector of your company to see whether your policies and procedures are according to the standards of the quality management system. 

Tips to Prepare for iso 9001 auditing

The Tips for the preparation of iso 9001 auditing for your company are:

  • Make sure you have a vast and 100% knowledge of what ISO 9001 is and discuss it well with your company’s team of management so that they know what actions to take to fulfill these requirements.
  • You should have regular internal audits of your company to make sure everything is per the requirements. Internal audit will help you get rid of problems before the ISO 9001 can detect them. This will help you to maintain an ISO certification to get promotions. The more internal audits you regulate the better it is for your company.

Steps for Iso 9001 auditing Certification

If you are new to ISO 9001, then the procedure may be a lot more confusing to you than a simple audit. Here are the steps for iso 9001 auditing to help you navigate it properly without any problem.

·       Stage 1 Audit

Stage 1 or step 1 in other words, has two purposes. The first is to make sure that your company has a QMS or quality management system so that it is always prepared for auditing. The second is that it helps the ISO 9001 auditor to map out the activities properly and confirm them so that step 2 can proceed. In simple words, step 1 ISO 9001 is just like a review of your company’s QMS documentation before going to the real part.

If all goes well in the first stage, you can move to the second and last stage of ISO 9001 auditing. If by any chance you encounter any issues during step 1, you will get a detailed report of the issues and the ways to overcome them. Your stage 1 will either be processed again or you will have to redo your audit.

·       Stage 2 Audit

Stage 2 of the ISO 9001 audit starts after the first step has finished. Documentation auditing will be held again briefly in this stage but that is not the main focus. The real focus of stage 2 is your organization’s operational aspects. Simple, you just have to answer the questions the audit will ask related to your team and their roles in your company. These questions also include the ISO 9001 QMS policies which they must know.

Show the auditor the evidence that your system has been working for a long time by giving the day-to-day work data. Along with one full round of audits that you ran by yourself for planning

·       Receive Certificate

After all those steps, if there is no problem you will get the ISO 9001 certificate which means you are recommended by the ISO 9001. This helps to promote your company and have a large customer line.

It’s not like you will receive an award if your ISO 9001 auditing is completed, instead, a recommendation will be on your report which is given to the CB technical community, and they will further check if the auditor was right, with the right evidence of auditing and its period. You can get your certificate within 2-12 weeks, which depends on your CB, Certification Body.

·       Surveillance Audits

All the operational processes will be covered in this audit. The surveillance phase looks at your company’s QMS including the management reviews and internal audits. This audit depends on the CB and will take time from 2-to 12 months.

In this audit, both the QMS documentation and operational aspects are audited. After this two surveillance, your operational processes will be covered by them.

·       Recertification Audits

The recertification is the last part of the ISO audit process. Your company will be viewed and reviewed thoroughly and check the improvements learned from the process and how far it has been applied to your company since the three-year beginning of the quality management system of ISO 9001.

This recertification audit is important as it looks forward as well to the planning made for an upcoming trading period for the organization. This program helps to set three years audit plan for the future.

When the results are positive, your company’s certificate will be reissued for three years and again the surveillance program will start.

ISO Certification

It is beneficial for your company to get ISO certifications as it increases your company’s value in the marketplace and helps you have more customers to promote your company. Hence, having an ISO certificate after the certification audits is essential for promoting your brand.


Experts who audit ISO are the driving force that ensure your company works according to the standards and operations of management. Taking these correcting actions is essential to improve your company.

When it comes to quality assurance, it is necessary to make the right preparations so that the product can meet the adequate quality standards. ISO 9001 certification can help businesses improve its quality of products and services, and encourage continuous improvements. Achieving ISO 9001 certification is an arduous task, but it can be achieved as long as your company is ready for the challenge.

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