Is your API-Certified Facility affected by the new Monogram Program Auditing update? Previously, facilities were able to apply for a Monogram License only and a re-certification audit would occur every three years if the company did not apply for a quality registration (ISO 9001, API Q1, API Q2, ISO 14001, or OHSAS 18001). The facility still had to meet the requirements of API Q1 as required by the Monogram Program but would not be audited every year, saving in audit costs by API. Things have changed.
As industry leaders demand more consistent products and stricter surveillance programs on manufacturers, API and its standards committees have answered the call by implementing annual audits for all facilities under their licensing programs.
What does this mean for your facility?
Only those with a Monogram Licenses that are not registered with a quality standard will be affected. This also depends on where the license expiration falls in the calendar year. If your Monogram License expires on or before June 30th, 2019, the annual audits will not begin until 2022. If your license expires after June 30th, 2019, the rule will go into effect immediately. If your license expires in 2020, the annual audits will begin after the renewal audit that same year and the same rule applies in the year 2021. Here is a chart to assist with determining what audit cycle your facility may fall under:
How to prepare
This new program change will mean more accountability from the industry and more pressure to maintain a quality program throughout the lifecycle of the certification. In times past, a majority of facilities with only a Monogram License that were audited every 3 years failed their audit and were required to be re-audited by API. Not only did this result in further audit costs, but also a suspension of the license during the long process of scheduling a re-audit and determining if responses to non-conformances met the expectations and requirements of the program.
Facilities will now have to maintain their programs every year. In theory, this was supposed to occur and companies should have maintained compliance with API Q1 at all times when they possessed an active Monogram License. In reality, many quality management system fell apart during this three-year time period and were only held accountable by either a surprise API audit or industry peers filing complaints about product non-conformances.
Now that annual audits will be conducted for all API-licensed and registered facilities, companies will need to be in regular preparedness for an API Audit or face the consequences of a suspension or worse, a canceled license and the long process of reapplying. Yes, this is a positive step for the Oil & Gas industry but it’s going to require more attention and costs to maintain quality and product licenses.