Walking a Tightrope: When Stakeholder Expectations Don't Align

Posted on May 20, 2014

One of the features that makes internal auditing so valuable to modern enterprises is that we serve multiple stakeholders, including the board, various levels of management, and even external auditors and regulators. One of the challenges is that these stakeholder groups often have very different expectations of us, and very different perspectives on how we add value.

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For Internal Auditors, Awareness Begins at Home

Posted on May 12, 2014

Most of us in internal audit leadership roles naturally assume that board members and management fully understand our capabilities and appreciate the value that internal audit can deliver. But do they really understand? And if they don’t, whose fault is that?

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Should We Try to Keep Everyone in Line?

Posted on May 6, 2014

A surprising number of internal audit recommendations spring from these “Who’s on first?” quandaries. That’s one of the reasons we spend so much time preparing flowcharts and narratives aimed at delineating responsibilities. Duplication of effort is almost always viewed as inefficient, and gaps are generally viewed as risky. 

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Is Internal Audit Losing Value? Not So Fast, My Friend!

Posted on Apr 29, 2014

I recently spotted the headline “Is Internal Audit Losing Value?” in a respected business journal. It was for an article based on survey results in one of the multitude of white papers on the internal audit profession that come out around the first quarter each year. Researchers indicated that a greater number of managers are questioning whether they receive “significant value” from internal audit.

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Managing Perceptions: What Should Internal Auditors Say on the Elevator?

Posted on Apr 21, 2014

I was recently interviewed about internal auditing by Federal News Radio, an AM and Internet station out of Washington, D.C. That interview was a great opportunity to represent the internal audit profession, but it also turned out to be an important reminder for me about just how internal auditors are often perceived.

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5 Risks That Should Be On the Internal Audit Radar - Now!

Posted on Apr 14, 2014

Generally speaking, I think internal auditors do a good job of assessing risks and developing risk-based audit plans. But there is always a danger that unfamiliar risks may be overlooked or that rapidly emerging risks will render even the best crafted audit plans obsolete. If you typically undertake risk assessments only once or twice a year, you may not have incorporated several risks that have suddenly burst onto the radar of management or the board of your organization.

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Changing Times, Changing Priorities: Are We Passing the Test?

Posted on Apr 7, 2014

On the surface, opportunities for internal auditors seem to be better than ever, with great prospects for career advancement. We are in a growing field and, because turnover rates are relatively high, new supervisory and management positions are constantly becoming available. As well, internal auditors are able to make important job contacts through their organizations, and many doors are open to us.

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American Center for Government Auditing: A Platform for Guardians of Public Trust

Posted on Mar 30, 2014

Government auditors often don’t get the respect they deserve. Not only do they contend with notoriously tight budgets and limited staff, but they also work in a politically charged environment where policies and procedures often are anchored in the shifting sands of political will, rather than in best practices. Doing the right thing can be especially difficult when it runs counter to a popularly held opinion. As I have noted before, we all have an interest in their success, because they are “the guardians of public trust.” 

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10 Vital Lessons From the Audit Trail

Posted on Mar 23, 2014

Over the years, I have sought to use this blog to offer critical imperatives that I believe internal auditors needed to address. Sometimes, these were strategic. Sometimes, they were tactical. Many of the blog posts were drawn from my experiences as an internal auditor and chief audit executive. I recently took the next step and assimilated the lessons I’ve learned throughout my career into a book. Lessons Learned on the Audit Trail is being released this week by The IIA Research Foundation.

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The Amazing Growth of Internal Auditing in the Middle East

Posted on Mar 17, 2014

In the 73 years since The Institute of Internal Auditors was founded, our profession has grown at a remarkable rate. But as with all occupations, internal auditing has had its ups and downs. The pace has never been steady and, at times, activity has been greater in some industries or geographic regions than in others.

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