ViewPoint Espresso report on audit findings Environmental management systems # 2, September 2022
The Espresso report is turning its focus to audit findings. What are companies struggling with these days? Where are the most common failures and root causes?
Throughout this mini-series, we will check how companies do in the following areas:
Quality (May 2022) (September 2022) Safety (November 2022)
Pulse2 Check 2022
In the case where the area is a recurring ViewPoint Espresso topic - we will, when possible, compare data to reveal any changes over time. Our objective is to provide insight on what enterprise risks may be top of mind for companies around the world.
DNV Setting© the scene
Analysing audit data from all environmental management system audits performed by DNV in 2021, we take you on a deep dive through the chapters, clauses and sub-clauses of ISO 14001. 3
• When looking at the most common findings and non-conformities overall, not surprisingly 5 out of 10 stem from chapter 6 and 8.
• The report shares insight on the distribution of findings and nonconformities overall and per chapter.
How to read this report
• You first get an overview of the percentage (%) of companies with findings and non-conformities and how these are distributed across the chapters.
• Particular attention should be paid to chapters 7 Planning and 9 Performance evaluation, as well. ISO 14001 chapters analysed: 4. Context of the organization 5. Leadership 6. Planning 7. Support 8. Operation 9. Performance evaluation 10. Improvement
• The data upon which the analysis is based is extracted from Lumina™, DNV’s management system certification performance benchmarking tool.
• Then we look more closely at the distribution of findings and nonconformities for each chapter, revealing the areas with which most companies struggle.
What did we find?
Topic in focus This time around, we look at risks and opportunities for companies with an managementenvironmentalsystemcertified to ISO 14001.
• Chapters 6 Planning and 8 Operation cause companies most concern.
• It is the ISO 14001 specific requirements on environmental aspects and compliance obligations that have the most findings in chapter 6.
What are the issues that cause companies most problems and thus what are the areas that should be at the centre of attention and improvement efforts?
• The runner ups are chapters 9 Performance Evaluation and 7 Support. For chapter 9, a total of 55.4% (23% non-conformities) of the companies receive findings. For chapter 7, the total is 42.3% (about 11% non-conformities).
• If comparing chapter 7 Support, there are fewer audit findings related to environment (42% vs. 56% quality). The discrepancy is mainly related to clause 7.1 Resources. (See more slide 6.)
Distribution© of findings and non-conformities per chapterEnvironment4
• For ISO 14001 certified companies, findings are most frequently found within: • Chapters 6 Planning (62.5%) and 8 Operation (64.9%) receive findings. For about 25% of the companies, these findings are non-conformities.
• When comparing to ISO 9001 (quality), audit findings for chapter 6 Planning are significantly higher (63% vs. 36%). The gap is mainly related to clause 6.1 Risks and opportunities. (See more slide 6.)
• Go to the next sections to dive further into each chapter, connected clauses and sub-clauses.
• Close to 5% receive findings related to clause 4.1 Understanding the organization and its context.
• Chapter 4 Context of the organization does not register the highest frequency of findings.
DNV Chapters© 4 Context of the organization & 5 LeadershipEnvironment5 – Distribution of findings and non-conformities
• However, 9% of the companies do have findings related to clause 4.2 Understanding the needs and expectations of interested parties.
• Chapter 5 Leadership covers key clauses to ensure an effective management system. With only 12%, it has the lowest frequency of findings. This is quite comparable to ISO 9001 numbers, where 10% have findings related to chapter 5.
• The clause with the highest number of findings in this chapter is 5.3 Organizational roles, responsibilities and authorities (6.4%).
Chapters© Planning & 7 Support Distribution of findings and non-conformities
• In chapter 7 Support, clauses 7.2 Competence covering provision of competent resources and 7.5 Documented information are areas where companies most frequently need to improve. For both about 20% have findings.
• For clause 7.1 Resources only approximately 3% of the companies have findings compared to about 32% for ISO 9001. This is due to the ISO 9001specific subclauses 7.1.1 to 7.1.6, which hold additional, more extensive requirements.
• In chapter 6 Planning, it is clause 6.1 Actions to address risks and opportunities causing the most issues with almost 56% registered findings. This is significantly higher than for ISO 9001 (quality) where only about 24% have findings.
• The gap is mainly due to additional specific ISO 14001 requirements. Findings for sub-clauses 6.1.2 Environmental aspects and 6.1.3 Compliance obligations are 32% and about 28%, respectively.
• Not surprisingly, clause 6.1 can be found on the Top 10 list of the most common ISO 14001 findings.
• Chapter 9 Performance evaluation pose challenges for a number of companies, as well. Especially, 9.1 Monitoring, measurement, analysis and evaluation is a challenge. Close to 40% receive findings. This clause covers determination of what, how and when to measure and when to analyze and evaluate results.
DNV Chapters© 8 Operation & 9 Performance evaluationEnvironment7 – Distribution of findings and non-conformities
• For clauses 8.1 Operational planning and control and 8.2 Emergency preparedness and response almost 54% and 33%, respectively, receive findings that require improvements.
• Chapter 8 Operation, which is at the core of ISO 14001, is where companies record the highest rate of findings overall. As many as 65% ends the audit with at least one finding.
• Chapter 10 Improvement looks at continual improvement of the environmental management system and its performances over time.
• Although this chapter overall does not have the highest frequency of findings, we see that clause 10.2 Non-conformity and corrective action, i.e. the management of these, is an area where more than 15% of companies are struggling to meet the requirements.
Distribution of findings and non-conformities
DNV Chapter© 10 ImprovementEnvironment8 –
issues at sub-clause
• The most common non-conformity is also subclause 8.1 Operational planning and control.
• It is closely followed by 6.1.2 Environmental aspects and 6.1.3 Compliance obligations. Among the Top 10 most common nonconformities, half are found in chapters 6 and 8 10 level
Environment – Distribution of findings and non-conformities
• Subclause 8.1 Operational planning and control tops the list of most common findings. Not surprisingly 5 out of 10 sub-clauses can be found in chapters 6 and 8.
• Further analysis of the sub-clauses for each chapter provides an aggregated Top 10 view for the most common findings and nonconformities.
Adding insight from DNV’s Self-assessment suite and Boost My Audit provides further insight. The self-assessment suite measures your standard understanding and management system readiness. Boost My Audit helps focus internal and external audits targeting improvement efforts on critical areas. Access is available to all DNV customers. Read more about our digital tools or contact us directly for more information or tool activation.
Methodology© and sample
The data analysed in the survey is an extract from the Lumina™ App, DNV’s intelligence benchmarking suite. The app provides you more in-depth high-level statistics on failures for any given standard, peer and internal benchmarking, and trend line analysis. This insight supports detailed planning of improvement paths and measurement follow up, for example.
This Espresso report is based on environmental management system certification audits to ISO 14001 performed by DNV in 2021, covering all industry sectors. 25,000+ This report is based on more than 50,000 audit findings from 10,000+ companies worldwide.
The data stems from Business Assurance customers in DNV and does not claim to be statistically representative of companies worldwide. Want to know more?
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