Technical Audit Checklist in Garment Industry

Technical Audit Checklist in Garment Industry

Shubham Anil Jain
Sr. Consultant
Cent Edge Solutions LLP, Bangalore, India


A very necessary and important aspect of audit for garment manufacturing is Technical Audit. It is basically noticed that almost every buyer ask for a technical audit before giving an order to any garment factory. Basically in garment industry before initiating business with a new buyer, the factory wants to enhance the quality of its currently supplied products, by maintaining the quality level upgraded, as it is very much necessary to study the factory’s self-capacity to make sure that it fulfills the customer’s demands. So, here technical audit is a kind of thorough verification of a factories manufacturing process and quality control system that is considered a systematic way to fulfilling customer quality.

Technical Audit in Garment Industry

The following are basic objectives of technical audit:

  1. To make sure that the QMS system is in place and work correctly.
  2. To correctly follow an audit quality control system.
  3. To compliance with customer quality SOPs and standards.
  4. To fulfill the customer’s needs of manufacturing and process control.
  5. To put up the best practices and solutions in garment manufacturing.

Types of Technical Audit (TA):
Following are the types of technical audit carried out in the garment industry:

1. Internal Audit/ 1st Party Audit:
So, basically this type of audit is being done by factory internal auditor which is selected by factory management. Internal auditor basically report to the factory management, management then simply inspects the report and take corrective action on each of the points mentioned report. Here factory found a scope of improvement as per customer quality needs and technical requirement by their own (internal) audit management system.

2. Customer Audit / 2nd Party Audit:
This type of audit is particularly done by customer / buyer by themselves, and then sends it to the factory and asks for corrective action on each of the points. A customer audit is found to be very necessary and important for the factory.

3. External Audit / 3rd Party Audit:
When it comes to the third-party audit, it is particularly an external independent audit, which is being done through a party hired or approved by the customer/buyer to cross check their process standard and SOPs. 3rd party is a kind of contracted organization which tends to work on behalf of the buyer, to make a report or certify factory for a certain period.

Technical Audit Checklist in Garment Industry:
Following are the technical Audit Categories/Sections for garment factory:

a) Factory Warehouse (Incoming Goods Storage):

  1. There should be accurate product identification, correct follow up of FIFO-LIFO,
  2. Correct storage items tracking system and inventory management
  3. To have mold prevention system, correct relative humidity %, and having a correct controlling system
  4. Pallet and racks should be used for trims, accessories and fabrics storage
  5. To follow 5S

b) Trims and Accessories Inspection:

  1. To have approved trim card for every running style in the factory
  2. Correct inspection procedure and lighting system
  3. Having a red tag area for rejected items storage
  4. Should have a third-party or factories internal test report of all trims and accessories available in the factory
  5. Proper documentation and reports against the failed product to the supplier and replace.

c) Fabric Inspection and Procedures:

  1. 4 point or 10-point system inspection system should be in place for fabric inspection along with the reports of same.
  2. Shrinkage test should be carried out for washing program
  3. Light box should be in place for shade evaluation
  4. Color evaluation and shade grading should be done as per customer requirement and SOP should be available in place.

d) CAD:

  1. Should have a Pattern Library and E-pattern library
  2. Daily marker calibration, verification should be done (pattern or dies, bundles, direction) and report should be available
  3. Should develop separate pattern as per shrinkage variation and requirements

e) Cutting:

  1. Check the grain line/notch indication
  2. Pattern measurement should be checked once for verification
  3. The SOP of fabric cutting should in place
  4. Fabric relaxation SOP should be in place and report documentation should be provided
  5. Spreading quality control should be checked with required parameters
  6. Bundling and numbering should be done separately, and correct report to sewing
  7. Cut panel inspection should be done before passing it to sewing and report should be maintained
  8. Use all the necessary types of personal protective equipment. Cutting safety accessories like hand gloves, musk.

f) Sampling and Pre-production:

  1. Pre-Production meeting should be done for very upcoming new style and keeping the document
  2. Sampling and pattern correction should be down before starting the bulk production

g) Sewing:

  1. Should have proper SOPs for process like Needle Control Policy; Sharps tools and Staples control
  2. Accurate Preventive Maintenance system for all the machines and report
  3. Roaming QC Audit system with the correct report
  4. Availability of the guide for maintaining correct seam allowance
  5. Sewing line should have approved trim card as well as approved sample for every running style
  6. In inline and endline quality checkpoint, correct mentioning of defects type record, and alteration
  7. There should be mockup (with written instruction) or JQS (Job quality standard) available for each sewing operation
  8. To verify the garments for construction, accurate seam quality, and overall garments look.
  9. There should be approved lighting condition in all quality checkpoint, with proper customer required lux and checking report
  10. Pull test should be done for snap and shank button and pull tester machine should be calibrated periodically

h) Fusing:

  1. Interlining bonding strength, temperature, time and pressure to be checked and report should be maintained
  2. Fusing quality checkpoint with correct report of the same
  3. Fusing machine timely maintenance and it’s report

i) Finishing:

  1. Quality checking points to be followed and report
  2. Metal and needle detection system should be in place and effectiveness
  3. Garments measurement checking with the standard measurement sheet as per customer requirement
  4. Preventive Maintenance system for all the machines and report
  5. Should not be excessive WIP of the garments
  6. For ironing operation, there should be accurate temperature, steam, Iron shoe, and head
  7. Approved sample for folding operation
  8. Garments AQL Audit should be in place

j) Carton Warehouse:

  1. There should be carton keeping system
  2. Ware should have the mold prevention system, with relative humidity %, and controlling system
  3. Should have proper standards for packing, inventory and delivery/shipment system
  4. Should follow the moisture percentage checking in garments
  5. Proper system should be place for carton weight report, scan and pack system

k) Final Quality Audit Room:

  1. There should be proper location for Audit room, which should be separated from the production area
  2. For doing final audit; there should be approved sample, trim card, inspection table
  3. The customer required a light source at the audit table with all the cleanliness

l) Documentation Required During Technical Audit:

  1. Factory quality control manual
  2. Quality inspectors training and evaluation exam results and reports
  3. Proper quality management system and their necessary activities
  4. All section should have the SOP separately as following:
  5. Trims and accessories inspection procedure
  6. Fabrics inspection procedure
  7. Cutting quality control standards
  8. Sewing quality control SOP
  9. Finishing quality control procedures
  10. All the Analysis with section quality result and setting all the KPIs
  11. Factory overall performance report from buyer end
  12. Correct factory layout, evacuation plan, management, and quality organogram should be in place
  13. All the machines of the factory should have calibration report attaching with the machine
  14. ISO, ASQ or any other international certificate what the factory is having
  15. All the quality tools should be calibrated, example; measurement tape

So, finally to summaries with a technical audit is a detailed evaluation of the factories capabilities and capacities. It gives you a clear idea of how well the factory is ready and will be able to fulfill the demands and standards in terms of production and quality, and also showcase how proactively the factory able manages these aspects. All the findings and observations from the audit will help buyer to make a correct decision regarding whether to place an order, and to understand the level of risk associated with this production.


  1. Technical Audit Checklist of Garment Industry
  2. Technical Audit in Apparel Industry
  4. Rongdhonu Masum, Technical Audit in Apparel Industry
  5. Explaining technical audits for the garment industry – definition, assessment criteria, and checklist highlights

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