On Tuesday 21 April 2020, ASU passed the second surveillance audit for its quality management system and successfully retained its ISO 9001:2015 Certification for the provision of administrative support for its students. The 2nd surveillance audit comes about two years after the University first achieved the ISO 9001:2015 Certification back in 2018 and one year after it successfully passed its 1st surveillance audit.
The surveillance audits are meant to verify that all the measures taken to install a robust quality management system are still in place, properly implemented and monitored, and are effectively leading to continuous improvement.
The external audit was performed by a senior external auditor appointed by RICI, the IRCA (UK) Approved Certification Body that inspected the University and granted it the certification in the first place.
This year, the external audit was conducted virtually through a purpose-built virtual audit room and consisted of live interviews with the selected departments in addition to documents’ inspection based on sampling and audit trailing techniques.
After an opening meeting chaired by the VP for Admin, Finance and Community Engagement with the external auditor and all the heads of departments selected for the external surveillance audit, the external auditor started conducting his virtual interviews with the top management and the selected departments as per the scheduled plan, including the QAAC, the HR Department, the Deanship of Student Affairs, and examining various documentation related to these departments and other departments such as the Marketing and Public Relations Directorate.
The technology deployed by the University allowed for the external auditor to conduct his mission very smoothly and he was very pleased with the way things were run. He finally held a closing meeting at the end of the day to thank everyone for their valuable cooperation, and confirmed that after his day-long audit activities, he concluded that the quality management system installed two years ago as per the ISO 9001:2015 standard is properly up and running and therefore, he recommends the University to keep its certification. The attendees cheered for this great news and also thanked him for his fine work and professionalism and took a virtual group photo.
This achievement comes as yet another testimonial of the University’s strong commitment to achieving high quality standards, achieving continuous improvement, and above all, achieving student satisfaction.
Next year, the University will be subject to a re-certification process, which means all the departments within the scope of the ISO 9001:2015 Certification will be audited again.