Auditor Certification

Some students that complete Internal Auditor or Lead Auditor training mistakenly consider themselves to be certified auditors. They may be qualified based on that training to conduct audits for their company, but there are additional steps to become an Exemplar Global (was RABQSA) certified auditor.

Perhaps the confusion is that they receive a course certificate after the class. While that is evidence of their auditor training for organizational reasons, the certificate is just proof they have met the training prerequisite for Exemplar Global (EG) auditor certification.

Some companies add to the confusion by referring to their trained auditors as certified auditors, meaning they have qualified them to audit. To become an EG-certified auditor, you must not only successfully complete an EG-certified auditor course, but must also submit an application that provides your education, work experience, and audit experience.

There are three types of EG auditor certification: Competency-based Quality Management System (QMS) auditor, Qualification-based QMS auditor, and QMS Internal Auditor.

Competency-based Auditor certification is based on specific competencies defined by industry as requirements for professionals who work in a given industry sector; your knowledge, skills, personal attributes, and qualifications will be assessed.

Qualification-based Auditor certification is based on the applicant’s education and qualifications, rather than on the basis of measurable competence.

You can read about the differences between CB-based and QB-based auditor schemes at this EG web page.

Internal Auditor certification is a scheme that demonstrates that an individual has been independently evaluated as meeting the EG standards using ISO 19011 as guidance.

Training by Auditor Grade

Competency Based QMS Auditor
Provisional Auditor = QM, AU
Auditor = QM, AU
Principal Auditor = QM, AU
Lead Auditor = QM, AU, TL

Qualification Based QMS Auditor
Associate Auditor = QM, AU
Auditor = QM, AU
Principal Auditor = QM, AU
Lead Auditor = QM, AU, TL

QMS Internal Auditor
Internal Auditor = QM, AU

QM = Auditing Quality Management Systems
AU = Management System Auditing
TL = Leading management System Audit Teams

Minimum Education

Competency Based QMS Auditor
Tertiary

Qualification Based QMS Auditor
Secondary

QMS Internal Auditor
Secondary

Minimum Work Experience

Competency Based QMS Auditor
2 years

Qualification Based QMS Auditor
If Secondary, 8 years
If Post-secondary, 6 years
If Bachelors, 4 years

QMS Internal Auditor
2 years

Minimum Audit Experience

Competency Based QMS Auditor
Provisional Auditor = None
Auditor = One witnessed audit by skill examiner.
Principal Auditor = One witnessed audit as solo auditor or team leader. Must conduct closing meeting.
Lead Auditor = One witnessed audit as team leader. Must conduct closing meeting.

Qualification Based QMS Auditor
Associate Auditor = None
Auditor = 20 days (up to 6 days offsite). 4 complete audits.
Principal Auditor = 20 days (up to 6 days offsite). 4 complete audits. At least 10 days and 2 complete audits as solo or team leader.
Lead Auditor = 35 days (up to 10 days offsite). 7 complete audits. At least 15 days and 3 complete audits as team leader.

QMS Internal Auditor
Internal Auditor = 20 audits in past 3 years.

For more on Competency-based and Qualification based auditor certification, view this EG web page. For more information on QMS Internal Auditor certification, view this EG web page.

You do not have to become an EG-certified auditor to conduct internal audits or supplier audits, unless your company makes it a requirement, and most do not. For your company to prove that its auditors have been qualified according to its own audit program, it will have to show records to the certification body (registrar) that indicate the auditors have been trained on auditing and the management system standard.

If you would like to attend one of our EG-certified auditor courses, please see the Class Schedule section of this newsletter.