What can you expect when you have your FORS audit? Should it be like a visit from the DVSA?*
Well, the FORS audit experience doesn’t have to be painful in anyway and you should expect to have an informative and pleasurable meeting with your FORS auditor. That said, this isn’t always the case. In my experience of FORS audits, (and I have been to a quite a few) I would say that it is possible you may encounter the odd auditor who can make you feel somewhat uncomfortable.
Now we can all agree there is always room for improvement but getting unwanted advice and obnoxious and dismissive comments isn’t necessarily what you signed up for. As far as I’m aware the general ethos of FORS (or more specifically Fleet Source) is to employ knowledgeable auditors who also posses good people and good customer service skills. In most cases that is the case. In fact, I have had the pleasure of meeting many FORS auditors whom are extremely talented transport consultants in their right and are really engaging people. However, if you have finished your audit exhausted with frustration, then how come a few have slipped through the net?
Finding the right people for the job
I can’t comment for Fleet Source or FORS but one can assume, as with all employers that finding the right people for the job can be difficult. I can speak from experience as I have made some not so great employment decisions. You meet the candidate, interview goes well, good CV etc. But after a few weeks it turns out they aren’t quite who they say they are, and that perhaps you may have misjudged your decision making process. Anyway, the point being it is understandable how some auditors may have the knowledge but lack certain other necessary skills required for the job.
Should I complain about my FORS audit experience?
Ok, so what happens if you encounter said auditor and haven’t had that great FORS audit experience? Well, you need to log a complaint. I know no one wants to sound like a whinge, but it’s vitally important you do log your concern. This way, something will be done about it and it will ultimately minimise the chances of someone else being subject to the same problem. However, you must ensure you do this the correct way. So here’s my list of Do’s and Don’ts after finding yourself in this unfortunate position.
- Do be polite at all times and stay on good terms. Even if this person is pushing your buttons!
- Don’t lose your temper, as the last thing you want is to have is a complaint logged against you and your company
- Do wait until your audit report comes back before you do any complaining. You need to have all the facts, remember knowledge is power!
- Do be meticulous. Go through each action point and work out what you disagree with and what you think the auditor has got wrong/missed etc
- Do think carefully about how you are going to approach the personality issues encountered. Be as positive as possible.
- Do be factual, concise and honest
- Don’t make any demands but you do need to think about what outcome you would like to achieve. If you have a genuine issue then I can say FORS will listen and deal with your complaint in a very professional manner
- Do refuse an auditor if they are known to be difficult. When allocated an auditor, you do have the right to refuse and request another one.
I’m not going to publish any names in this post about the FORS audit experience. However, if you are about to apply for your FORS Bronze audit, then feel free to get in touch and I will happily let know the names to watch out for!
*Please note this isn’t to say DVSA visits and DVSA officers provide a bad experience. All DVSA officers whom I have met are very professional and have been very good at making the operator feel at ease. It’s just a more pressured experience as the stakes are much higher!
Have you had any bad or indeed great FORS audit experiences? I’d love to hear about them! Let me know in the comments section.