The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) published an updated edition of the ISO 19011 auditing standard in December 2011.
This International Standard provides a uniform and harmonised approach to multiple management system audits, where many organizations incorporate a number of management systems, such as quality, environmental, IT services and information security.
This new version has a greater scope that the first edition of the International Standard published in 2002 which applied only to the auditing of management systems based on ISO 9001:2008 (quality) and ISO 14001:2004 (environment). It has been expanded to reflect current business practise and deal with the complexities of auditing multiple management system standards (MSS).
It will assist organizations to optimize and facilitate the integration of their management systems and to adopt a single audit of their management systems. leading to streamlined audit processes, reduce duplication of effort and decrease disruption of work units being audited.
An interesting clarification has been given by ISO on the relationship between ISO 19011:2011 and ISO/IEC 17021:2011, Conformity assessment – Requirements for bodies providing audit and certification of management systems. Those involved in management system certification audits are required to follow the requirements of ISO/IEC 17021:2011 but they may find the guidance in this International Standard useful.
It will be interesting to see how these two International Standards are able to be used cooperatively by certification bodies especially with the development of ISO/IEC 17022 (Conformity assessment – requirements and recommendations for content of a third-party audit report on management systems.
A copy of ISO 19001:2011 can be obtained from ISO at http://bit.ly/zbROHF or your local Standards Body (i.e. BSI in the United Kingdom) and more information on the publication of the International Standard can be found at http://bit.ly/rRg1nW