WATCH – the FORS Auditor video

The following video provides an initial insight into a FORS audit and the set processes to be followed.

READ – the FORS Standard

The FORS Standard sets out the requirements you need to meet in order to successfully pass your Bronze audit.


ATTEND – ‘Going for Bronze’ workshop

If you are preparing for your Bronze audit, the ‘Going for Bronze’ workshop is a great place to start.

If you are an accredited operator preparing for your re-approval audit you may also find it useful to attend the workshop to refresh your knowledge of the FORS Standard.

    Going for Bronze workshop

READ – the top five most common reasons for audit failures

To fully prepare for your audit, take a look through the most common reasons why operators do not pass their audits.

 Requirement  Reason for failure  Top Tip
 D4 Professional Development  Failure to provide the required mandatory training courses and produce a professional development plan for all staff.
  • Put in place a training plan for all transport staff, not just drivers
  • Make sure that the plan outlines the type of training needed – this is to include approved courses and when the courses are require to be delivered
  • Use toolbox talks and Driver CPC training (if in scope) as evidence of ongoing professional development. To access, the FORS Toolbox Talks, please click here
 D7 Driver Fitness and Health  Failure to complete the mandatory six monthly eyesight checks and/or failing to have a system in place where employees have the ability to report illness/ailments or medication that may affect their ability to drive (including physical and mental impairment and the use of prescribed and non-prescribed medication).
  • Carry out eyesight checks at a distance of 20 metres
  • Ensure the checks are conducted by a member of the transport team or person responsible for health and safety
  • Make sure your eyesight check register includes: the driver’s name, date of the check, name of the person carrying out the check, number plate used, ‘pass’ or ‘fail’ and details of any follow on actions
  • In your driver fitness and health policy, include a procedure that requires drivers to notify the fleet operator of health issues
 D2 Driving Standards  Failure to have a written driving standards policy. Alternatively, one is in place but does not cover the company’s business in an appropriate manner. In addition, operators are failing to provide drivers with access to a most recent copy of the Highway Code.
  • Make sure your driving standards policy covers all company, manager and driver responsibilities
  • Ensure your policy is subject to a regular management review to ensure that emerging issues in driving standards are addressed
  • Place particular emphasis on vulnerable road users
  • Make sure drivers sign a declaration stating they have read and understood the company policy on driving standards (be sure to re-brief them following any update or on an annual basis)
  • Remember you need to demonstrate that all drivers have access to a copy of the most recent Highway Code (FORS members can obtain a copy of the Highway Code at a discounted rate here)
 O4 Engine Idling  The company does not have a written anti-idling policy in place and in operation.
  • Ensure an anti-idling policy is written to suit your business and that it is read and understood by all drivers
  • Educate the transport staff about the cost of fuel to the business and the environmental impact of excessive engine idling
  • If you have telematics, these can be used to determine instances of engine idling (with or without PTO engaged)
  • Coach operators should instruct their drivers to turn off the engine when loading/unloading etc
 V1 Inspection and Maintenance Plan  Inspection and maintenance plans are not being managed in a way that allows operators to ensure that vehicles, trailers, equipment and related machinery have planned and proactive maintenance systems in place so they operate safely, legally and efficiently.
  • Ensure that 15 months of historical records are available and periodic maintenance and inspections are programmed six months in advance
  • Ensure that a maintenance plan is used, ie wall chart or electronic and show that it accounts for all vehicles held, for at least six months into the future
  • Record if specialist equipment such as brake test equipment etc are inspected, calibrated, serviced in accordance with the servicing schedule

PREPARE – evidence

On the day of the audit, the auditor is required to see evidence of the systems and policies you have in place to manage each of the requirements set out in the FORS Standard. You will also be asked to demonstrate how you ensure your employees are aware of and adhere to the processes you have in place. Some examples of the type of records you will be asked to share are driver’s eyesight checks, fitment of vehicle safety equipment, evidence of driver licence checks, risk assessments and vehicle maintenance plans.

To help you prepare for your audit, we’ve put together some examples of the documents that the auditor is required to see (list not exhaustive):

COMPLETE – audit self-assessment

To ensure you are fully prepared for your audit complete the ‘audit self-assessment’ to confirm that you have all the processes in place before requesting your audit.

    Audit self-assessment