Internal audit’s focus is on building risk awareness and aligning with business strategy
Respondents reported that their top audit priorities for 2018 are to provide timely insights on key risks, align audit planning with business strategy, and improve audit processes and operational effectiveness. However, their top challenges lie in adding value to the business and aligning audit processes to changes in the business organisation.
Auditors want technology solutions for real-time data access and detailed analysis and presentation
As boards and executive management teams demand deeper insights into risks, internal auditors are looking to leverage more analytics and other emerging technologies. 77% of the respondents reported an interest in data querying and analysis tools, 75% in continuous control monitoring tools, 60% in data visualisation capabilities, and 58% in modeling and predictive analysis tools.
Enterprise risk management (ERM) is not yet pervasive
Only 50% of the respondents reported having a dedicated ERM team and programme. Of the remaining respondents, 25% indicated not having an ERM programme at all, which could be a significant cause for concern. Meanwhile, 25% reported that their organisations’ ERM programme is maintained by their internal audit team.
Other key findings:
“Today’s internal auditors have a new mandate to go beyond traditional assurance, and to deliver strategic, forward-looking, actionable risk insights that can help the business perform with integrity,” said French Caldwell, Chief Evangelist, MetricStream. “Rising to this new demand will require internal auditors to upskill, improve agility and cross-functional collaboration, and leverage technologies like predictive analytics and continuous monitoring tools. It’s a significant shift in role and outlook, but it’s also an opportunity for internal audit to create new impact and value for the business.”