Auditing is not just about checking up on people, it is about identifying whether there are any common themes or issues that are coming up over and over again and using this information to help support staff.

The process of making social work 'auditable' is in danger of being destructive, creating a simplistic description of practice and focusing on achieving service outputs with little attention to user outcomes. Alternatively, however, if it is linked to research methods, it could be highly constructive, producing reliable evidence not only on efficiency but on effectiveness.

Eileen Munro,  The Impact of Audit on Social Work Practice, British Journal of Social Work 34(8)  pp1075-1095

Case audit should be undertaken:

  1. All case files will be audited at a frequency appropriate to the level of contact (at least every 6 months).  This should correspond with the child's review.
  2. Following the decision to close or transfer a case, it is expected that the allocated worker will have self-audited the file before passing the file to the team manager.
  3. If there are any gaps in the information which are identified by the team manager, the electronic or paper file will be returned to the allocated worker for completion.
  4. No file will be either closed or transferred without an accurate and fully completed audit.

Purpose of auditing

Audit log pro forma

Audits should be recorded in the following manner with frequency being set by the team manager:


TaskOfficer ResponsibleRecordTimescale

Case discussed in formal/informal supervision and closure/transfer agreed, or routine audit is required.

SupervisorSupervision/ case note placed in electronic or paper recordsImmediately
An audit will be undertaken, at least 6 monthly, on all files and will be recorded on supervision notes and the appropriate section on electronic or paper recordsSupervisorAudit logOn file at the point of audit
Audit logs will be completed.Case accountable workerSupervision record Audit logNext supervision
Within Residential/Foster placements the team manager will set up a system to counter sign a child's record and maintain a separate audit log.Accountable Residential/foster carerChild's record