1. What is the role of the lead auditor and lead implementer in ISO processes?
First is important to note that ISO management system standards do not require a lead auditor and/or lead implementer to perform ISO processes, so the organizations are free to adopt these roles or not according to their needs.
Considering that, the lead implementer's role is to guide the management system implementation, from the identification of requirements to implementation of corrective actions and opportunities for improvement identified in the management review.
The role of the lead auditor is to define the audit program, perform audits, and elaborate audit reports, according to the requirements of the ISO management standard. In case there is more than one auditor involved, the lead auditor is the responsible person for the team.
Lead implementers are not normally considered for regular positions in organizations, because in most cases management systems implementation are project-related activities, with a defined date to start and finish (it is best to hire than as consultants).
On the other hand, internal audits are regular activities to be performed in a management system, and depending on the complexity of the audit program, when a single internal auditor is not enough to ensure a proper audit process, the presence of a lead auditor can bring benefits in terms or organizations and dissemination of competencies (they are qualified for training internal auditors).