I recently conducted an internal audit on sections 7.1, 7.2.1, 7.2.2, and 8.5.1 of the QMS here at PCL, Disraeli Bridges Project, Winnipeg, Manitoba.

There was no ‘real’ auditee as I had not consulted with anyone and answered questions based purely on my knowledge and review of documentation of the project and how PCL satisfied these particular clauses.

My question is, as I am the “overseer” of the QMS, is this considered to be conflict of interest or the auditor auditing their own work? I felt that I could answer these questions without having to consult with others but am not quite sure if this would be acceptable. Could you please provide advice?

– Mike O’Sullivan, QMS Coordinator, PCL Constructors Canada


You audit by review of documentation, interview and observation. Even if you haven’t talked with anyone you could learn audit information by observation that activities match up with documentation.

For example – for 7.1 if you were looking at planning – you could confirm plans that were expected to be complete were actually in place.

7.2 – Are contractual or customer requirements being met? Are permits in place per customer requirements?

8.5.1 – Can you actually see evidence of continual improvement? Documentation indicated certain things were to occur and you have observed them taking place?

The only conflict would be if you were interviewing yourself (so to speak). Also if you are the owner of the process, you cannot audit your own work. Hope this helps.

– Michael Haycock, Sr. BRC Quality Consultant



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