CARES remote auditing

To maintain the trust, confidence and high standards in the market during the current pandemic, CARES announced on 21st April that all assessment of scheme compliance and ongoing certification of approved companies would be conducted utilising remote auditing techniques. This step was taken to ensure the health and safety of CARES assessors and client personnel.

What is a remote audit?

A remote audit is conducted off site, either in full or in part, using web-conferencing and file sharing technology to assess scheme compliance and competence. The process is seamlessly delivered through a range of digital platforms such as Skype, Microsoft Teams, Zoom Meeting and others, as appropriate.

CARES has developed robust remote auditing techniques and procedures in accordance with the relevant Accreditation Bodies – i.e. UKAS and SAC, in our sector – in order to  maintain standards and confidence  In CARES’ range of client services.

What are the key benefits?

  • Ability to demonstrate continued scheme compliance and competence in order to maintain certification.
  • Reduced carbon emissions and cost savings through reduced travel for CARES and client teams.
  • Flexibility – CARES can engage with client teams regardless of operational location.

What should CARES clients expect from a remote audit?

The objective of a remote audit is the same as an on-site audit; to assess ongoing scheme compliance, capability and competence. To achieve the high standards expected, CARES continues to utilise its team of highly skilled and competent assessors. As with an on-site audit, the remote service will involve preparation of an audit programme, provided in advance, detailing the audit structure and scope of documentation and technical activities to be assessed remotely. 

What preparatory steps should CARES clients take in advance of a remote audit?

Remote audits are reliant on technology, so we recommend the following preparations are made in advance of the audit:

  • Ensure there is a stable internet connection.
  • Client IT system allows access to the web-conferencing platform to be used, for example Skype, Microsoft Teams, Zoom Meeting or other recognised platform.
  • Confirm the availability and access to key personnel who would ordinarily be interviewed in support of an on-site audit. Under normal circumstances, this process would involve senior management and/or relevant personnel with specific technical and administrative responsibilities.

What happens if connectivity fails during the audit?

CARES assessors will work with you to continue with the assessment wherever possible. If connectivity cannot be established, our assessor may revert to conducting the assessment by telephone conference and emailing/file sharing of documentation where practicable.