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03 October 2018

Transitioning Internal Audit to be Fit for the Future

By Jennifer Greig

Based on my time working within the Pentana team at Ideagen, it is apparent that sophisticated companies around the globe are still managing their risk methodologies through a dated manual approach. As companies embrace the digital era, internal audit must also move beyond the traditional assurance model to keep up with the dynamism of their business environments and stay relevant to key stakeholders.

I spend a lot of time speaking with internal audit teams to understand the latest industry developments, and how they are responding to increased organisation complexity, coupled with the rising number and types of audits. In recent years there have been many changes when it comes to the board and management's expectations of their internal audit departments. To mitigate risk and improve controls in today’s constantly changing environment, internal audit must be able to give prospective strategic advice to the business, to help them be proactive to change, instead of reactive. Organisational stakeholders are increasingly looking towards their IA teams for input in strategic planning and viewing internal auditors as strategic advisors to their business objectives.

With this shift to strategic advisor brings new expectations. Organisations are expecting a more comprehensive, transparent view of business risk and the ability of IA to "better identify and more effectively respond to their dynamic risk landscape" [1]

Many internal audit departments are approaching our team at Ideagen, with concern that their dated manual approach may not be able to meet these expectations. At Ideagen we work with individual IA departments to meet their objectives by enabling: 

Internal Audit

By implementing a technologically sophisticated solution, our customers have become more agile and flexible through their ability to adapt internal audit planning and priorities to changes in the strategic objectives of the organisation. Internal audit, board members and shareholders are more confident in their understanding of the critical risks through increased transparency and intelligent reporting, allowing them to act quickly in today’s constantly changing environment.  The CIIA points out that working with stakeholders is a continuous process[2] . Pentana Audit allows IA teams to have constant dialogue with their management teams so that findings can be actioned before the end of the audit process.

Pentana Audit

Harness the power 

To be fit for the future IA functions must maintain their relevance and value to the company’s objectives, by aligning their strategic plan with the overall business’. IA teams must ensure to keep pace and be available to provide recommendations on how to mitigate risk before they occur. Perhaps most importantly – it is time to move on from dated manual approaches and harness the power of technology.  Providing intelligence throughout the audit cycle to deliver better insights into the business will increase the confidence of the audit committee, board members and shareholders.

Pentana Audit is part of our Pentana Assurance product suite. Discover today how Pentana Audit can help transition your IA team to be fit for the future.

[1] PwC 2015 State of the Internal Audit Profession Study

[2] CIIA Working with Stakeholders

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