It is a common practice to break large audits up and to involve multiple auditors. Or a single auditor may want to create multiple separate audits (one for each site or one for each department). These multiple audit files can easily be merged into a single document with AuditSoft. Below we discuss the steps for completing a team or department audit.
The first step is for the Lead Auditor to purchase a license and to setup the Master audit file. This is a AuditSoft audit (.asa) file for which the auditor has:
- Ensured that the Company legal name is correct.
- Complete most of the information in the Audit Information section.
- And complete the information required in the Scope section. Specifically it is important to:
- define all the sites within the company and
- define the total number of employees for each site.
Distribute the master file
The next step, before starting any of the Evidence Gathering steps, is to distribute the Master file to each of the team auditors. This will ensure that all the auditors have files containing the correct Site names and interview requirements.
When the supporting team auditors open the Master file that was sent to them they:
- Will not have a current license and will be notified that "You are not licensed to edit this File"
- The team auditor should then select "Purchase a license" which will give access to the file at the published reduces "team Auditor" rate.
The team auditors can then start to Gather Evidence at each of the sites that they visit.
When to Merge Audit Files
When you merge audit files AuditSoft will merge the content of all the sections within the file.
In most cases the audit team collects the Documentation review, employee Interviews and Observation tours (DIO) evidence and a single lead auditors compiles the final report. If this is the case the merging of files should be completed AFTER the Gather Evidence steps have been completed and BEFORE the lead auditor compiles the Audit Results
Merging Audit Files
Once all the auditors have completed the evidence gathering steps they should send their audit files back to the lead auditor who will then merge them into a single file. For details on how audit files are merged see Merge rules below.
To start the Merge the lead auditor will:
- Open the Master audit (.asa) file
- Then click on the Merge audits icon in the toolbar
- Click on Add Audits to add the additional audits to merge. If the files cannot be merged a error icon will be displayed next to the file that is violating one or more of the Merge rules
- Then select Start Merge
- The files will be merged and you will be prompted to save a new file that now contains the information from all the merged files.
In order to merge two or more files the following rules apply:
- All the files must have the EXACT same Legal company name
- The Master file sets the Site names in the Site Sampling table that can be merged (please pay attention to spelling, spaces and capitalization)
How are files merged:
- Question is not applicable to this audit - Only questions that are marked as "Question is not applicable to this audit" in the Lead Auditor's audit file will be marked as "Questions is not applicable to this audit" in the merged audit
- Review Documentation - In general there should be only one auditor that answers a specific documentation review question at each visited site. If two or more auditors answered the exact same questions at the exact same site the average result will be used in the merged audit.
- Conduct Interviews - Interviews are combined into a single file and AuditSoft assumes that there are no duplicate interview results in the merged audits.
- Record Observations - In general there should be only one auditor that answers a specific observation tour question at each visited site. If two or more auditors answered the exact same questions at the exact same site the average result will be used in the merged audit.
- Comments, Findings and Notes, Strengths and Suggestions for improvement - During the merging of audits these sections will be appended. The resulting output audit will contain the content of all the merged audits.
- Summary Information - During the merging of audits these sections will be appended. The resulting output audit will contain the content of all the merged audits.