The Client: A Leading Oil & Gas Company

Overview

The company is deeply committed to protecting the environment, ensuring the health and safety of its people and complying with global standards and guidelines. In line with these goals, it has established a rigorous program for safety, quality and compliance management. It has also created an Environment,Health and Safety (EHS) policy that integrates occupational health and safety management with environment protection.

Significant resources are devoted towards training, building awareness and encouraging employees to fulfill their compliance responsibilities. In addition, thorough audits are conducted to ensure that all external and internal policies are adhered to, that quality standards such as ISO 9001 are met, and that noncompliance and enterprise risks are mitigated.

As the company’s business operations expanded and became more complex, auditing processes demanded much more time, effort and investment. In the face of these developments, the company was keenly focused on enhancing the efficiency of audits, while improving their cost-effectiveness and ensuring compliance with all regulations and requirements.

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Solution

To overcome the above challenges, the company decided to implement an automated, integrated and web-based system for Audit Management, Incident Management and Corrective Action / Preventive Action (CAPA) Management.

After considering several solution providers, the company chose MetricStream because it offered them a single platform approach to streamline audit and CAPA management across the enterprise. It also offered them the benefits of scalability, flexibility and automation. Moreover, the MetricStream platform was built as a modular system. Therefore, if the company wanted to implement more GRC modules such as Compliance Management and Risk Management, the system was equipped to scale up to these demands.

Once chosen, MetricStream thoroughly studied the company’s requirements, conducted a gap analysis and then implemented its Audit Management,  Incident Management  and CAPA Management Solutions.

MetricStream Audit Management Solution comes equipped with a range of powerful and innovative features including best practices, risk and control assessments, automated alerts and work-flow based remediation processes. Using the solution, the company can manage all audit-related activities from a common platform. It can also streamline across the enterprise, its entire audit lifecycle - audit scheduling, development of audit checklists, implementation of audits – both online and offline, gen-eration of audit reports, and review and implementation of audit recommendations.

The solution enables the company’s auditors to define each audit in a logical structure and hierarchy. For instance, audits related to quality standard ISO 14001 can be defined along with detailed tem-plates, work orders, risk and control assessments, pass/fail criteria, checklists and audit tasks. Each audit can be scheduled periodically or triggered on an ad-hoc basis depending on the requirements of the company.

Whenever the audit is scheduled, automatic notifications are sent to the auditor as well as the entity that is being audited. During the audit, the solution enables auditors to record qualitative and quantitative findings, both onsite and offsite. It also provides predefined formats for entering detailed observations and recommendations. Errors and inconsistencies are eliminated through the solution’s systematic, work-flow driven process.

Once findings are generated, the system routes the audit findings and recommendations for review. If issues are identified, they are immediately routed to the MetricStream Issue Management module. The module interfaces with company departments and systems to capture the required information on the incident, including the type of incident and source. A root-cause analysis is then conducted to identify the source of the problem, categorize it and assign it to the appropriate personnel for inves-tigation. Following this, the CAPA module initiates a remediation or corrective action process. The entire process is kept on track with automatic alerts sent out in cases of delay.

Advanced reporting capabilities generate mandatory reports in pre-defined formats and layouts. This helps the company simplify the reporting procedure and improve efficiency. Powerful role-based dashboards provide real-time visibility into the auditing and CAPA processes, and enable the company to measure the progress of these processes against key milestones.

Each dashboard comes with drill-down capabilities that provide statistics by a variety of parameters such as audited entities, audit schedule, reports, type of report, and type of CAPA action triggered. Using these dashboards, the company’s auditors can gain a transparent view of audits, risk and com-pliance across the enterprise at any given time. It helps them track leading and lagging performance indicators and send out notifications or apply remediation actions if operations vary from expected performance levels.

Challenges

Absence of a unified process for Issue Management: The company did not have a unified, enterprise-level issue tracking and monitoring system. Consequently,it became difficult to capture critical incidents such as fire hazards and oil spills which could impact the safety of workers and the profitability of the company.

Limited collaboration: With over 600 audits needing to be completed every year, the company’s resources were strained. Adding to the complexity, each department – such as Operations, Environment, Health, Fire and Safety, and Quality – conducted their audits without much interaction or collaboration with others departments. This isolated approach of auditing often led to redundant and duplicate audits, which in turn, consumed more resources, time and effort than was actually required.

Lack of automation: The company had to audit approximately 18 areas and check for multiple compliance regulations ranging from ISO 9001 to ISO 27001 to OHSAS 18001. Most of these audits were conducted using manual paper-based processes. As a result, tremendous time and resources were spent on collecting the required information, analyzing the information and delivering the required insights.

Limited visibility: Given the large scale of the company’s operations, it was imperative that managers gained timely visibility into audit trends to make crucial business decisions. However, their existing systems did not provide them with a centralized and real-time view of audit processes and results. Instead, managers had to wait for the reports to be compiled manually.

Why the Company Selected MetricStream?

MetricStream provides a single platform approach to streamline and integrate compliance management across the enterprise

MetricStream supports the independent management of downstream assignments with the capability to roll information back upstream for centralized reporting

MetricStream comes equipped with strong reporting capabilities such as executive dashboards, risk heat maps and color coding charts which provide centralized and real-time visibility into enterprise-wide risk and compliance data

MetricStream Solutions are easy-to-use, quick to implement and can be scaled up or down as per the company’s requirements

MetricStream contains comprehensive, automated workflow capabilities to efficiently manage the audit universe and audit lifecycles from start to finish

Benefits

  • Enhanced collaboration and integration:
    Using MetricStream Solution, the company can streamline and integrate audits across the enterprise, thus breaking down restrictive organizational silos and improving collaboration across business departments,operations and locations. Each of these units can perform audits independently but collaborate to ensure that their efforts are not duplicated in other units. This way, costs are saved, operational efficiencies are gained and the accuracy of auditing is improved.
  • Better visibility for decision-making:
    With MetricStream’s powerful dashboards, the company can evaluate the status of audit and CAPA management at any time. Hard facts and metrics delivered by the system enable managers to track and resolve issues efficiently, ensure on-going compliance and make informed business decisions impacting profitability.
  • Simplified process management:
    With MetricStream’s user-friendly features, the company can easily and confidently comply with regulatory demands. Automated capabilities reduce the time and effort required for audit and CAPA management, enabling auditors to focus on more value-oriented functions such as analyzing audit trends and advising the company Board.
  • Increased cost efficiencies:
    MetricStream’s automated workflows, control testing and issue remediation enable the company to reduce the manpower and resources required for auditing and CAPA management. It also enables them to transform audit management into a competitive advantage, thus attracting more customers.

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