Friday, November 11, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

Environmental Audit Services - Standard Closing Conference Reports

At the end of a typical audit, before the auditor leaves the location, standard reports are provided to local management at a closing conference on the last day of the audit so they will immediately know the results and can begin working on corrective actions.

These reports are:

  • Audit Results Report (PDF)
  • Audit Results Summary Report (PDF)
  • Action Plan Report (PDF)
  • Action Plan Worksheet (Excel Worksheet)

Many additional reports and other outputs are available, of course, but the four listed above represent the standard set of reports/documents disseminated at the end of every audit.  ARS Environmental ReviewsTM makes it easy to generate these reports in only a few minutes.  These reports are also designed to make it easy to compare locations to each other and to any previous audits that may have been conducted.

The Audit Results Report provides a detailed view by audit area and the categories and items in each area.  This report is scored and a percent/grade is calculated to help gauge the results.  Click on image to view in a larger window.

The Audit Results Summary Report summarizes each audit area by category.  It is similar to the Audit Results Report but without all the detail.  This report is also scored.  Click on image to view in a larger window.

The Action Plan Report lists all the problems found that require corrective actions.  For more information about the Action Plan Report, see our post of August 25th, 2011 regarding Action Plans and Corrective Actions.  Click on image to view in a larger window.

The Action Plan Worksheet is an Excel worksheet similar to the Action Plan Report that serves as a working document for use by location staff in assisting them to take corrective actions and to implement policies and procedures to prevent the problems identified in the audit from reoccurring in the future.  For more information about the Action Plan Report, see our post of August 25th, 2011 regarding Action Plans and Corrective Actions.

For more information about Environmental Audit Services and ARS Environmental ReviewsTM at The Carel Corporation, please checkout our website at:

Environmental Audit Services

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Environmental Audit Services - Both Internal and External Audits are Encouraged

Environmental Audits at The Carel Corporation (TCC) using ARS Environmental ReviewsTM are designed to support the different requirements and audit scenarios typical of any company.

  • Internal Audits Only (Good)
  • External Audits Only (Better)
  • A Combination of External and Internal Audits (Best)

The preferred method is a combination of both external audits by TCC auditors and internal audits by internal audit staff for at least the first year with 100% of locations being audited by TCC.  This establishes a good baseline "state of the nation" upon which to build your audit program in second and subsequent years and to train your auditors to properly and consistently perform the audits. 

Standards of performance can then be established and agreed upon by operations and future audits measured against this internally developed and agreed upon standard.  Auditing 100% of the locations the first year also helps in creating the buy-in necessary from operations since everyone shares in the "pain" equally and had a role in creating the standards they will be measured against.

The second year could then consist of a mix of external and internal audits with maybe 10 - 20% of the locations audited by external TCC auditors and 100% of the locations by internal auditors.  External TCC auditors would be used as a disinterested third party without any ties to the company or operations to thereby ensure a fair and balanced evaluation consistent across the organization.  The locations to be audited could represent a cross-section of your company's locations or could just target the poorest performers or a mix of both in each region or area.

Often times however, companies lack the internal staff and/or resources to audit 100% of the locations and believe it is preferable to have the external auditors audit all locations and internal auditors just "reaudit" locations that have done poorly or to just focus in on specific areas identified as requiring more attention.  By targeting opportunity areas already identified by the external auditors, internal audit staff resources can be used more effectively. 

It is also preferrable to have a certain percentage or number of audits be "test" audits.  Depending on the size of the organization this typically ranges anywhere from two to ten audits.  Once these test audits are completed and a standardized template for all future audits developed, it makes it easier to perform the audits without any surprises or sudden unexpected and possibly disruptive, unwelcome or confusing changes after a large number of audits have already been completed.  Retroactive restating of results are also avoided.

Test audits are done by external TCC auditors only using ARS Environmental ReviewsTM.  However, internal auditors and staff are welcome and encouraged to be present and involved in the audit, however, they will not use ARS Environmental ReviewsTM until after the test audits are completed and have started training.

Although a combination of both internal and external audits of 100% of the locations is the preferred method, external audits done by TCC auditors only is also a very good option for many organizations.  This is especially true for companies that do not want to develop or need a full-blown internal audit capability or believe the best results are best left to the experts!

Anyway you want it, The Carel Corporation can provide a solution tailored to your situation.

For more information about Environmental Audit Services at The Carel Corporation please check out our website at:

Environmental Audit Services

Friday, September 2, 2011

Happy Labor Day!

The Carel Corporation will be closed Monday, September 5, 2011 for Labor Day.  We will reopen Tuesday, September 6, 2011 at regular business hours.  

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Environmental Audit Services - Action Plans and Corrective Actions

One of the most important aspects of any environmental audit is getting, not just the results (findings), but also the action plan (corrective actions).   Developing and completing the action plan is often the most complicated and time consuming part of the whole process.  The completed audit is truly only half the battle.

It can take a week or longer to put together a good action plan and too often this gets put on the "back burner" because of other priorities.  The resulting action plans are many times not worth the paper they are printed on.  Worse still, the problems identified in the audit do not get corrected and procedures are not put in place to prevent them from reoccurring in the future.

With ARS Environmental ReviewsTM, 100% completed action plans with corrective actions, regulatory standards, SOPs, references, target completion dates and responsible person(s) are generated at the closing conference before the auditor leaves.  As a result, work on the action plan can begin immediately.

All problems areas discovered during the audit are delineated on the action plan, along with:

  • Detail Regarding Exactly What the Deficiences Were
  • Corrective Actions (professionally developed by experienced experts)
  • Responsible Person(s) assigned to implement the corrective actions
  • Target Completion Date
  • Actual Completion Date
  • References to Company SOPs, Policies, Contracts, Manuals, etc.
  • References to Regulatory Standards (DOT, OSHA, EPA, ADA, etc).
The action plan is a working document saved as a Microsoft Excel worksheet that can be edited by management staff. 

Everyone involved knows what has to be done, when it has to be done, why it has to be done and exactly who is responsible for each and every deficiency found on the audit. 

This 100% completed action plan helps to ensure that corrective actions are understood and are actually implemented so that the problems do not reoccur. 

For more information about Environmental Audit Services at The Carel Corporation, please checkout our website at:

Environmental Audit Services

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Environmental Audit Services - Getting Your Audit Data Out is Easy

With any database application, entering your data is only half the battle.  Many database applications may handle data entry (inputs) reasonably well (or not), but then fail when it comes to quickly and easily producing meaningful results in the form of reports, charts/graphs, exports, etc (outputs).  Unfortunately, applications all too often look like something only your IT department would love to use. 

The learning curve just to figure out how to enter your audit data can be steep enough, but then you go to print something (to get the data out) and discover you have to fight the application all over again just to print even the simpliest report.  You will often be asked to enter "Parameters", "Date Ranges", "Generate" something called a "Query", etc., before you can even know what the report will look like.  Even frequently used standardized reports can require considerable training and expertise to generate (something the vendor will be happy to offer and charge you for). 

With ARS Environmental ReviewsTM, printing reports, charts/graphs and exporting data is just as quick and easy as entering the data was in the first place.  A single click on a button is all it takes to produce any type of output.  One-click Reports.  One-click Charts/Graphs.  One-click Exports.  One-click Screenshots.

Also, everything is automatically previewed first so you know exactly what you are getting before you produce the report, chart/graph, export, etc.  This makes learning how to use ARS Environmental ReviewsTM a snap. It also nicely accomodates the laptop user who may not always want to carry a printer around with them everywhere they go.

This "expertise" and "skill set" carries over to each and every report, chart/graph or export throughout the entire application.  Once you have mastered clicking on one button, you will have completely mastered the process for ALL of them.  In addition, it makes generating any kind of output a very rapid fire process you can learn with little or no training or reference to a user guide or, heaven forbid, the dreaded and never used F1 Help emergency option! 

Top 10 Things to Know About ARS Environmental ReviewsTM Reports, Charts/Graphs and Export Options:

  1. With a Single Mouse Click on a Button You Can Produce Any Type of Output
  2. Outputs are Always Previewed First (Nothing Goes Directly to a Printer)
  3. Outputs can be Printed, Emailed, Saved as PDF Files or Converted to Image Files (BMP, JPG, GIF, PNG, TIF), etc.
  4. You Can Export Your Data to Excel and Create Your Own Reports and Graphs, Databases, etc.
  5. A Printer is Not Required
  6. Customization of Reports, Charts/Graphs, Exports, etc., is Available
  7. Top N Reports, Charts/Graphs and Exports Take Only Seconds to Produce
  8. Presentation Quality Output is Available for Use in PowerPoint Presentations, Word, etc.
  9. Even Screenshots Can Be Used as a Report with a Single-Click on a Button
  10. Very Little or No Training is Required to Learn How to Get Your Data Out!
To learn more about Environmental Audit Services at The Carel Corporation, please check out our website at:

Environmental Audits


Thursday, August 11, 2011

Environmental Audit Services - Our Application is Simple and Easy to Use

You will be pleasantly surprised to learn that ARS Environmental ReviewsTM, despite the breadth and complexity of the material/subject matter covered by the audit, is very simple and easy to use.  Working with the application is by far the easiest part of the the entire audit process.

Even people who have never used or worked with a database application before can learn everything they need to know to use ARS Environmental ReviewsTM effectively with just a few hours of training.  Data entry into any of the modules is a simple straight forward process that typically takes only a few minutes.

Although there are over 75+ audit area data-entry modules, hundreds of reports, charts/graphs, etc., learning how to use any one of the modules immediately gives you complete mastery over all the rest.  The skills you learn using one, carries over to all the other modules because of the standarized layout.  Even printing sophisticated Top N reports and graphs is accomplished with just the click of a button.

All questions are answered exactly the same way throughout the entire application:

Y - Yes
N - No
D - No Detail Provided
A - N/A
X - Not Examined

The remainder of the data entry typically consists of a series of checkboxes that require clicking on the appropriate choices with your mouse.

For more information about Environmental Audits Services, please checkout our website at:

Environmental Audits