See below for some general frequently asked questions concerning our auditing process.
Relax! You aren't being singled out for something you did or didn't do.
All University's activities are subject to audit. We select audits based upon factors such as the size of your operation, the time elapsed since your last audit, and recent important system and organizational changes. A prioritized list of audits is developed and reviewed with University management.
Your area is being audited because it is considered important to the University's success.
There are many benefits of having an internal audit in your area. It is difficult to find the time to stand back and thoroughly review your systems or practices. The audit will provide the assurance that professionals trained in operating and control systems have objectively reviewed your area. The internal auditors are aware of effective methods used throughout the company to help ensure achievement of important goals.
If the audit report you receive contains relatively few minor concern items, then you and your management can feel confident that your practices are working to help your organization achieve its goals in a well-controlled manner. If the audit identifies major control issues, we will work with you to develop the most practical recommendations for improvement.
A little anxiety is natural during an audit. Our audit approach is designed to ensure fairness and objectivity. Our internal auditors are trained to conduct their work in a friendly, constructive, and positive manner.
One employee at your site will be designated as the audit communication and scheduling coordinator.
From time to time during the audit, we will want to meet with you to seek answers to questions and review the results of the audit as they emerge. We will make every attempt to be flexible in meeting your time requirements. Also, please make sure that the written procedures, transaction records, and reports related to your function are organized and readily available.
The audit will be conducted by one or more University internal auditors. The number and type of auditors will depend on the nature of the audited area.
We are a team comprised of professionals including Certified Internal Auditors, Certified Information Systems Auditors, and Certified Public Accountants. We have extensive audit experience within the company. Careful matching of skills and experience to the requirements of each audit results in giving you the best service we can provide.
At the beginning of the internal audit, the auditors will introduce themselves to you and the other key employees who will participate in the audit. Employee interviews will be arranged to review each section of the audit.
The internal auditor will begin by explaining the objectives of the interview, and then ask you to explain how you perform certain tasks. The internal auditor may ask you questions to clarify your job practices and identify the internal controls already built into your duties. You may be asked to provide examples of forms or transactions that you complete, or to walk through job steps from beginning to end.
You should respond directly and specifically to the internal auditor's questions. If you don't fully understand the question, please ask the auditor to clarify. This will help avoid misinterpretations. You should explain the normal way you complete your job functions, describing the transactions you process and the items you receive from, and give to, others. Please provide recent, actual, completed documents as examples.
The internal auditors have the authority to review all practices and records relevant to the audit area. Classified government information or documents are the only items that should not be revealed. The internal auditor will handle all information in a discreet and professional manner.
The internal auditor will compare your actual job practices to the standards which relate to them, such as policies and procedures, laws and regulations, and Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). We will also consider the way management intends your tasks to be completed.
The internal auditor will review preliminary concerns with you to ensure all of the facts are correctly understood. Other employees may be consulted to determine if their practices offset any risk that might be present. After all of this careful review, audit testing will be conducted to validate and size the extent of any problems.
The internal auditor will review a sample of transactions during audit testing. Transaction testing is a natural part of the audit process. You may be asked to provide documents or files which will be reviewed by the internal auditor. Please provide the items as quickly as possible. The internal auditor will compare each item to the related predefined performance standards or management expectations.
You will be given an opportunity to review all exception items. You may have additional information or documents which might help clear the initial control concerns for some items.
We will work closely with you and your supervisor to properly interpret the testing results and reach final agreement on the facts. We will work together to identify practical recommendations for needed enhancements or improvements. A meeting will be held at the end of the internal audit to discuss the recommendations which will appear in the audit report.
The most important control issues will be included in the audit report, along with your action plans for improvement. A draft report will be prepared for review by you and/or your local management. After we reach agreement on report content, the final audit report will be distributed to senior management.
No internal audit is valuable unless positive enhancements or improvements result from it. At the end of the quarter following the report, we will send a simple implementation status inquiry to the audit coordinator. This serves as a progress report on the actions you planned in your audit response. You may be asked to provide status input. The progress will then be reported to the Audit Committee. Your area will be re-audited in the future based on the normal audit selection process described earlier.