One of the interesting conversations I have with my clients is around being audit ready.

Many people despise having audits, internal or external, but we can learn so much from them.

So, let’s get past my nerdish leanings. There is a better question lurking underneath here.

How do we become audit ready, all year round?

If we can do this, a lot of benefits start to flow.

If you are audit ready, you don’t need to prepare for an audit. It’s part of what you do already. There is nothing else to do with the audit, you can use your time for other things.

If you are audit ready, this most likely means that you already have your routines and habits established. These could be driven by a leader in the organisation, or embedded within the wider staff base. As long as there is a drumbeat in the business, then you can be audit ready.

If you have the right routines and habits in place, it is likely that you have fewer crises. There are fewer items to have to chase after to stay still. There is the opportunity here to make sure that your whole team know who is responsible for what, and when they need to produce their deliverables.

This level of clarity comes when you aspire, and work towards, being audit ready 365 days of the year.

Being audit ready, all the time, is an interesting goal. If you work towards it you can spend less time on the unexpected and more time on the activities that will make a difference. Move your sales into new sectors. Improve the efficiency of your service delivery team. Take the time to deliver the customer service that you know your customers crave.

Yes, working slowly to become audit ready, through the establishment of effective written documentation, clear routines and a focus from leadership, is a great goal for 2024. If you aren’t audit ready, all the time, I urge you to give this some thought.

Giles Johnston
Giles Johnston

Giles is a Chartered Engineer and the author of several books on process improvement including, What Does Good Look Like? and Effective SOPs.