Self-Assessment: a key element for internal audits

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Companies constantly seek to be the best on the market. Gaining quality, productivity and performance demand great investment from everyone involved. This is why achieving sustained success in a demanding environment and complex situation necessitates continuous self-improvement via self-assessment.


Who is concerned with self-assessment? What is it all about?


When a company seeks to be the best in its industry, it is not always about the quality of the products and services delivered, but sometimes it is a question of the internal organisation and the continuous improvement of its performance, procedures, risk management, and many other aspects. These companies rely on self-assessment to set new goals and stand out from the competition.




In every company, self-assessment is important and should be done regularly. Self-assessment is a management tool to evaluate the global performance of a company and when necessary make the right decisions to implement corrective actions and set new goals. Every department should have appointed personnel to conduct these assessments, depending on their expertise, knowledge and skills.


To help companies excel with their self-assessment, there are many tools and international standards on which they can rely, such as the ISO 9004:2018 which provides a self-assessment tool to make sure that their quality management system is well implemented.


Field and operations control


Before starting any self-assessment, one should wonder and ask themselves some important questions:


  • Why is it important to conduct self-assessment? (Which position? What is the aim?)
  • Who will be the appointed person(s)?
  • What are the procedures of the self-assessment? And how to conduct it?
  • What is the frequency? (daily? weekly? monthly?)


Once everything is clear, and all the questions are answered, managers and appointed employees can conduct the self-assessment: all the procedures and protocols are reviewed (depending on the aim of the self-assessment). Employees have a major role to play here, especially when it comes to the equipment and other materials used in their daily tasks. They have to control the equipment according to the corresponding periodic control templates and specific to every machine/equipment. They can also report their feedback on the operational protocols in place to improve the performance and quality of the operations. These controls will allow the detection of non-conformities and implement the appropriate corrective actions. Managers can also rely on quality tools to detect other anomalies and problems, such as the 5M method, and the 5 Whys.


Operations control and all the corresponding procedures are important, as they allow investment time optimisation when preparing for an internal audit. It is better to fix the problems little by little, rather than fixing them all at once, which can be time-consuming.


Moreover, in a complex environment and constantly evolving market, new risks can emerge especially when implementing new technologies in the company, such as the implementation of “Cobots” in the production department to increase performance. Hence self-assessment is an important tool to control these risks and make sure that all the related procedures comply with the required regulations.


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Managerial control


In general, it is important and necessary to determine the key controls and all the aspects to cover when conducting the self-assessment. Especially when a company is looking to revolutionize its internal procedures and implements a new integrated management system, which will bring important modifications to the entire processes and protocols. Thus, determining the major key controls and all the processes covered by self-assessment are essential, and must be approved by the management board. There are many criteria that are specific to each company depending on its activity.


Self-assessment will allow every company to steer it in the right direction if it deviates from the objectives set in the management review. And sometimes, it will allow the emergence of new goals to be achieved depending on the evolution of the market and allow fast decision-making when conducted regularly. 


Companies can monitor their performance, activity and objectives advancement via dedicated tools such as KPIs/KRIs and dynamic dashboards. Additionally, other tools can be used to improve the performance of a company and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses, such as the EFQM Model.


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Internal auditing


Internal auditing is a process that allows the evaluation of certain protocols, processes and procedures in a company. Thus, self-assessment is important to avoid certain malfunctions, anomalies or any other problem during an internal audit, or when calibrating and implementing procedures to comply with the requirements and criteria of a certain certification. Moreover, the effectiveness of self-assessment is also evaluated thanks to internal auditing, in terms of both quality and reliability.


When a company seeks to maintain a certain certification, obtain a new one or even implement a new management system, it is necessary to involve everyone concerned and all the responsible operators in the process. Relying on the competencies and knowledge of all the principal operators in the company regardless of their position is one of the key factors to succeed in all the new procedures, certification and management processes to come.


Self-assessment is a key tool to always review and monitor the company’s performance and maintain high-quality products and services. It necessitates the involvement of every employee and all the services and departments. Moreover, self-assessment is an important tool to achieve sustained success and they go hand in hand with the continuous improvement policy of every company.


To go further: 

> Improve your internal auditing system with BlueKanGo’s digital platform and its app Audit management software (available on BueKanGo’s Marketplace)

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