Meet the Auditor: Jamie Obern

I started scuba diving when I was sixteen. I’ve previously owned a dive shop, and run diving operations in a range of countries. Since 2009, I’ve run my own operation, Tech Dive New Zealand. I have an accounting and auditing background, and in 2014 I sat on the Activity

Safety Guidelines committee for diving. Some of the other operators approached me then and suggested I become an auditor.

At first, as an auditor, I noticed that some operators would just try to throw paperwork at the problem, without a very strong link between the paperwork and the actual practice. Over time, the good operators realised that used properly, paperwork contributes to better safety. And they’ve streamlined the process so they are no longer drowning in paperwork. I am an operator and I get audited too, so I know what it’s like. My advice for others is, please don’t get angry with your auditor. We are there to help you, and the process is so much smoother when a good relationship is in place. If you are new, or you don’t understand something, seek advice early on to get your processes right, and you’ll save a whole lot of time and money in the long run.

Matt Phillips