STS Solutions Careers
1st June 2016

Internal audits – they aren’t just a tick box exercise…

Do you carry out internal audits, or have you considered introducing them? We share with you how to avoid them being a “tick box” exercise, and to make them a powerful management tool.

Internal audits, for food safety or health & safety, can help you drive standards forwards. We share with you our experience and insights to help you get the most from your internal audits. Internal audits are a great way for you take time out to focus on safety. Also tells your team that you are committed to achieving high standards.

Know Your Standards

Internal audits measure actual performance against your company policies, procedures and standards. The question is how can you compare performance against your standards if you are not clear on them yourself? Confusion ripples across the organisation if advice is given by internal auditors which goes against company policy. The answer is to know your standards, and if you are not sure then dust off your manuals and find out. Still not clear? Raise it as an area that needs to be included and clarified within your next systems review.

Be Honest

Internal audits show a long list of ticks is very commonplace. Almost just as common is for this not to tie up with the findings of an external auditor or EHO. If auditing your own site, it is recognised that admitting your weaknesses goes against the grain, but it is an effective, constructive auditor who is honest and reflects in the report the actual standards found.robe

This is your opportunity to discover weaknesses in you standards and put things right before the EHO arrives, so get out of the office and get stuck in! Don’t take anything at face value. Continue to probe until you get the real answer. Have your staff show how they complete tasks and verify your policies and procedures.

Positive Feedback

Always give credit where credit is due. Those of you who know us are likely to agree that at STS we are not afraid to give praise where deserved. We realise that maintaining high standards can be hard work and that recognition of this can go a long way in motivating your team, so don’t hold back.


There’s no point wasting valuable time on internal audits if the report gets lost in cyberspace and nothing happens. Communicate your findings, execute your action plan, allocate tasks and sign them off.

At STS Solutions, we have specifically designed our food safety internal audits to help your business demonstrate compliance with both the food safety management system you have in place, and the legal requirements for all companies. Our nationwide team of auditors consists of some of the best in the business, each with considerable experience working across food safety enforcement and throughout the food service industry.

For more information on our audits, get in touch today on 01252 728 300

Happy Auditing!


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