Background of integrated systems auditing

Integrated management systems (IMS) certification is a holistic approach that combines multiple aspects of an organisation’s performance in order to meet the requirements of several management system standards. These include standards such as ISO 9001 (quality management), ISO 14001 (environmental management), ISO 45001 (occupational health and safety), ISO 27001 (Information Security) and ISO 50001 (energy management). With integrated management systems, organisations can develop and implement a single solution that controls all of the following:

  • Risks and opportunities for product & services,
  • Customer requirements and satisfaction,
  • Environmental impacts,
  • Health and safety hazards,
  • Information security integrity.
Audit Services Timeline

With this integrated approach, much of what is needed from the management team can now be done under one umbrella, and top management can now take a broader view of their organisation whilst undertaking the following activities:

  • Planning,
  • Assessments of risks and opportunities,
  • Internal audits,
  • Management reviews,
  • Continual improvement.

The end result is that:

  • The organisation can now be managed using joined-up thinking.
  • Auditing models can be revised to provide a much broader remit, but with fewer audits.
  • KPI’s & SMART objectives can now become more aligned.

The first benefit is that it presents the opportunity to get out of the silos! This is defined as ‘a mind-set present when certain departments or sectors do not wish to share information with others in the same company. This type of mentality will reduce efficiency in the overall operation, reduce moral, and may contribute to the demise of a productive company culture.

Once an organisation has decided to integrate their management systems then it can start to plan the real benefits. Organisations that have already implemented a single management system based around the PDCA cycle will find it up to 50% quicker when they come to implement their next management system.

The High-Level Structure (HLS) is now common to all ISO standards means that all management system standards have a core text and the same look and feel and facilitates greater integration between systems of different disciplines. This and the PDCA Cycle means it is much simpler to integrate your management systems into one platform, and organisations can now implement a single solution with the following benefits:

  • Meeting all standards’ requirements with one set of policies and procedures,
  • Increased efficiency and effectiveness,
  • Improved performances and accountability,
  • Reductions in system maintenance and auditing costs through integration,
  • Demonstration of commitment to continuous improvement for the organisation as a whole,
  • Integration of all considerations e.g. environment, health and safety etc. into core business decision-making processes which facilitates more complete decision-making,
  • Reduced duplication, bureaucracy and optimisation of resources,
  • Increased time and opportunity to implement proactive measures.
  • Improved internal and external communications.

When integrating several standards into one system there is a need to ensure that the organisation has clearly considered and defined their level of integration. Besides the High-Level Structure (HLS), organisations should look for commonalities between the different management system standards to avoid duplication and also consider a process control approach. All measures taken should be consistent with the basic objective of the system i.e. to help achieve the success of the business plan and adaptation to the size and complexity of the organisation. The implementation of an IMS can have a considerable impact on how an organisation operates and manages its business processes so our experienced consultants will help you in the process by carefully evaluating your existing systems through document review, interview and observation and draw up a detailed action plan for development and implementation.

Integrated management system audits, typically to PAS 99, are intended to review a company’s progression towards achieving integration of its standards and, where the organisation is already accredited, to identify means of improving performance.

Operating an effective integrated management system relies upon effective system audits by competent auditors. Our auditors draw on their extensive expertise to provide an independent and expert look at your IMS to identify opportunities for improvement to improve the consistency and effectiveness of your system, eliminate redundancies, optimise processes and resources, reduce bureaucracy and costs and facilitate better decision-making. Compliance audits can also be undertaken to review the site’s compliance with corporate, legal and other requirements.

Contact BioLogiQ

Schedule a FREE Consultation

For more information on how we can save you money, call us on 087 9678 372 or email
Contact BioLogiQ