Quality Audits

Quality audits are independent reviews performed by trained auditors or third-party reviewers. The purpose of a quality audit is the same as the purpose of the Perform Quality Assurance process—to identify ineffective and inefficient activities or processes used on the project. These audits might examine and uncover inefficient processes and procedures as well as processes that are not in compliance with organizational practices.

You can perform quality audits on a regular schedule or at random depending on the organizational policies. Quality audits performed correctly will provide the following benefits:

■ The product of the project is fit for use and meets safety standards.

■ Applicable laws and standards are adhered to.

■ Corrective action is recommended and implemented where necessary.

■ The quality plan for the project is adhered to.

■ Quality improvements are identified.

■ The implementation of approved change requests, corrective actions, preventive actions, and defect repairs are confirmed.

■ Gaps or shortcomings in the process are identified.

Quality improvements come about as a result of the quality audits. During the course of the audit, you might discover ways of improving the efficiency or effectiveness of the project, thereby increasing the value of the project and more than likely exceeding stakeholder expectations.

Quality improvements are implemented by submitting change requests and/or taking corrective action. Quality improvements interface with the Monitoring and Controlling processes because of the need to submit change requests.

You'll look at change requests and change request procedures in Chapter 10, "Measuring and Controlling Project Performance."

Experienced specialists generally perform quality audits. The specialist's job is to produce an independent evaluation of the quality process. Some organizations are large enough to have their own quality assurance departments or quality assurance teams; others might have to hire contract personnel to perform this function. Internal quality assurance teams report results to the project team and management team of the organization. External quality assurance teams report results to the customer.

Project Management Made Easy

Project Management Made Easy

What you need to know about… Project Management Made Easy! Project management consists of more than just a large building project and can encompass small projects as well. No matter what the size of your project, you need to have some sort of project management. How you manage your project has everything to do with its outcome.

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