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Internal audits have traditionally added value through identifying and managing risk. With mounting focus on incremental gains that create advantage, they’re increasingly being used for improving your company’s effectiveness and risk assessment as it relates to financial reporting, compliance, and security.
With their inherent objectivity, such audits can help your business both to identify inefficiencies and highlight opportunities, enabling you to boost overall performance and achieve your financial goals.
To turn your company’s internal audit into a powerful strategic tool, there are a few key steps you can take:
> Focus at the top, linking the audit to your company’s objectives and strategies. The audit can identify goals, culture, and ethics monitoring.
> Work with management to anticipate and identify emerging issues.
> Schedule the audit team to meet regularly and privately with the internal auditor in order to grant direct access to the leadership and the team.
> Establish how the audit function relates to legal, security, environmental health and safety, and compliance and credit risks. The audit should consider and identify redundancy or gaps between these functions.
Employing outside auditors can add an unbiased viewpoint and broader knowledge and expertise to your internal company’s team. An objective third party is also likely to help establish the new auditing culture you’re aiming to achieve.