Auditing

A fundamental feature of the Scheme is that rigorous auditing of Scheme members is carried out by SER in order to confirm that they are undertaking certification to an adequate standard.

SER may initiate an audit of an Approved Body or a Certifier at any time. The timing will depend on a number of factors, such as:

  • Number and severity of findings from the previous audit
  • Number of certificates signed since the previous audit, or since joining the scheme
  • Risk classifications of projects certified since the previous audit

An audit may also be initiated following a decision by the SER Board to investigate, for example, the discovery of, or complaints of, poor practice.

SER’s procedures for auditing are described in ‘Procedures for Auditing the Activities of Approved Bodies and Approved Certifiers’. The October 2016 edition applies to audits undertaken on or after 1 November 2016. Guidance related to each of the criteria for assessment of projects, found in Appendix B of the Procedures, may be found below.

SER Scotland Audit Procedures

Will I be able to access my previous audits? +

As with certificates, all of your previous audits have been migrated to the new system; you can download a copy in PDF format from each audit's page - which is accessible from the audit history page on you user home page.

How often will I be audited? +

SER endeavour to audit all Certifiers and Bodies within a year of their activation date and at least every 5 years following a successful audit.

How long does the auditing process take? +

In the case that only a single Certifier and Body are audited we endeavour to have our auditors complete the process within a day.

Please be aware that if more than 1 Certifier is audited the process may take longer.

What are the possible audit outcomes? +

There are 8 possible audit outcomes.

In order of least to most severe these are:

- Audit within 5 years
- Audit within 4 years
- Audit within 3 years
- Audit within 2 years
- Audit within 1 year
- Active with mentoring
- Suspension with mentoring
- Termination

Active with mentoring - Your ability to generate certificates will remain active but the auditors and SER will request that you submit proposals as to how you will improve your procedures.

Suspended with mentoring - Your ability to generate certificates will be temporarily removed pending the submission of satisfactory proposals as to how you will improve your procedures.

Terminated - Your ability to generate certificates will be removed permanently.