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Mastering the Art of Process Audit Preparation: A Pre-Sales Perspective

I’m often called upon to conduct onsite process audits as a part of the pre-sales procedure. At times, driven by enthusiasm, a Business Development Manager might schedule the audit without the essential groundwork being laid. Allow me to share my favoured approach to preparing for a process audit.

Initial Discovery Meeting: I prefer organising an initial discovery meeting via Teams. This enables me to gauge the personalities involved and pose preliminary questions regarding objectives and expected outcomes. It’s crucial to comprehend the individuals objectives and the required presentation format.

Organisational Structure Insight: For extensive process audits, having access to organisational charts is beneficial. This allows me to understand team dynamics.

Identifying Stakeholders and Champions: Knowing who the key stakeholders and champions are is vital. It aids in anticipating their objectives and conducting preparatory stalking research before our meeting.

Process Familiarisation: I require basic information about the processes, including names and descriptions. This preparation is essential for the onsite aspect of the audit. If it’s a process I don’t know or even a process I haven’t worked on for a while I want to familiarise myself with it not just go in blind.

Technology Landscape Overview: Understanding the technology landscape, including the systems in use and their interactions, is necessary.

Offline Preparation: With the above information, I can now prepare for the audit.

Conducting the Audit: The audit itself presents pros and cons, whether conducted onsite or remotely. While having screen recordings and transcripts is invaluable, there is also significant merit in face-to-face interactions.

Process Prioritisation: In the case of a large audit, it may be necessary to prioritise processes to determine which to address first.

Process Documentation: I document the processes using universal process notation. For reference, check out Skore (

Presentation Preparation: I prepare the presentation for the organisation, utilising insights from the discovery meeting to generate the appropriate outputs. This often includes a process matrix to highlight key points, slides for each process with links to process maps, and suggestions on solution costs versus savings. I’m ready with detailed information for those who seek it and overviews for those who prefer a summary.

The preparation for a process audit visit involves significant groundwork. Remember, prior preparation and planning prevents piss poor performance.


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