Auditor Spotlight – Robert Fletcher

When businesses require an ISO 9001 certification, they can count on experienced auditors like Bob Fletcher to ensure they comply with the stringent requirements of a reputable certifying body like PRI Registrar. As an auditor, he has conducted hundreds of compliance audits and surveillances encompassing various industries’ codes and standards. He has performed 46 audits in 2015 of commercial and governmental organizations as a representative of PRI Registrar.

 

AUDITING PROCESSBob Flechter ISO 9001 Auditor

“When I show up at a client’s facility, stage one of the audit is typically a document review. The overall length of the audit usually depends upon the number of employees in a company and whether or not they do design and development,” Fletcher said.

The second stage of the audit is implementation. Fletcher walks around a client’s facility and talks to people. He asks them about their awareness of the Company’s QMS and

how their responsibilities and duties contribute toward implementing a successful QMS. “A good auditor is out on the shop floor, he said. “I’m not a desk auditor; I talk to

people on the line. This is especially important in manufacturing.”

Fletcher explained that it is crucial that an auditor is not seen as adversarial. “I want to make sure the client obtains their certification. I make my findings clear—I don’t want to write them up unless they fall short of the requirements.”

“As the process moves along, the company truly becomes my client. I’m always with them. Over the course of on-going annual audits, I get to know their business better and I form a relationship with them. Additionally, I’ve signed a confidentiality agreement. My clients can be assured that their information stays within the arena of the audit.”

 

BENEFITS OF CERTIFICATION THROUGH PRI REGISTRAR

Fletcher explained that the reputation and accessibility of a certifying body is very important. “PRI Registrar is different,” he said. “They focus on customer service and they have multiple points of contact within their organization. They have three people assigned to each client. Also, their clients can access a web-based application that allows them view to all of their records.”

Smaller companies that obtain ISO certifications have a marketing edge over competitors who do not. Another benefit is that companies that take their certifications seriously can collect metrics that lead to improvements in their process. This can allow them to grow their infrastructure in a managed way that ensures their quality standards are consistent throughout their entire business model. And, universal adherence to quality standards boosts customer satisfaction.

“From an auditing standpoint, I get tremendous support from PRI Registrar,” Fletcher said. They make sure their clients’ quality management programs are always improving. And, in difficult situations, they’re always just a phone call away.”

 

PREVIOUS AUDITING EXPERIENCE

• NCA-3800 Mfr. /Suppliers

• ASME Code Section III Suppliers

• Test Laboratories

• NDE/NDT Services

• Primary Metal Industries

• Fabricated Metal Industries

• Industrial and Commercial Machinery

• Electronic & Other Electrical Equipment & Components

• Measuring, Analyzing & Controlling Instruments

• Calibration Services

• Computer Software and Hardware

• Information Technology

• CMMI for Services and Development

 

PRE-AUDITING QUALITY MANAGEMENT EXPERIENCE

Fletcher explained that though as an auditor he cannot act as a consultant, his consistent evaluations and explanations of deficiencies make for a smoother process. And, as a quality management professional for almost 30 years, he knows what it takes to achieve an ISO 9001 certification.

As the Senior Quality Management Representative for a large Alaskan Native Corporation with revenues in the hundreds of millions and thousands of employees, he was responsible for achieving certification to ISO 9001:2000 for the company headquarters in Anchorage, Alaska and its Service Center in Ashburn Virginia. In the course of the next four years, added several of their largest LLC Subsidiaries to the ISO Certificate including a complete recertification to the ISO 9001:2008 Standard.

“I was educated at the University of Maryland and I started my professional career in the commercial nuclear industry,” said Fletcher. “Since then, I’ve performed quality management in a variety of government consulting positions for the DOD, energy, agriculture, commerce, medical facilities and for veterans programs.”

Fletcher is based in Washington D.C. and is geographically located to audit clients in the area. He has been an active member of the American Society for Quality (ASQ) since 1990, where he receives ongoing training as certification standards evolve. He is required to renew his certification every year and must train and complete a recertification process every third year.