The exit interview should begin with the team leader thanking the applicant personnel for accommodating the inspection and for their time and effort. An appropriate way to recognize an organization’s hard work is, “Thank you for your hospitality over these last two days. We realize how much work it has been to prepare for this on-site inspection and accommodate all our requests.”
Take the time to provide a short introduction. It is helpful to the applicant to state the purpose of the exit interview and provide a short agenda. For example, inspectors may say, “The purpose of this closing interview is to summarize our major observations. Much of this has been described to you throughout the inspection. Remember this is a summary. Each of us will speak about the area we inspected, and then we will review the next steps and offer you an opportunity to ask any remaining questions.”
It is important to be constructive but realistic during the exit interview. Explain what will happen after the inspection and when feedback is likely to be received. Each inspector then reviews his/her assigned area. Achieving this balance can be very difficult. Try to indicate areas where there was clear excellence or noncompliance.