Importance Of External Audit

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The dynamic nature of the 21st century business and technological transformation have posed the awareness of multinationals and SME’s to move towards an enterprise wide enhanced security framework, transparency, objectivity and accountability in internal audit functions to meet multiple compliance requirements, rigorous identification and response to compliance risks, external audit needs, national and international audit standards.
The road to successful internal audits in preparation for external audit has never been a smooth one due to a large number of reasons ranging from inefficient audit resource management, managing IT infrastructure transformation
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from business owners to executives down to end users. This must also reflect stake holder value, interest and expectations. From the top hierarchy the definition of the enterprise structure, goals and objectives as regards business performance, return on investments, assurance, compliance, accountability, risks and controls are determined and must be communicated to the relevant persons.
The internal audit team should advice on creating a defined org. structure, IT governance, communicating goals and objectives to responsible persons.
Also the internal auditor should define best practice for business procedures, policies, processes, risk identification techniques and control implementation.
He should furthermore advise the cooperate team on leveraging technologies, adequate knowledge transfer, certification and training for audit team and other relevant end users in order to create value through Accountability: Identifying responsible persons, objective assessment and evaluation of evidence, ensure compliance to internal regulations and efficient running of business process and operations. In addition flexibility (to meet changing
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This enables proactive advisory procedures to bridge the gap between business process (policies and regulation) and IT processes policies and regulation requirement. The technological transformation has increased the awareness of auditors to leverage IT skills and facilitate audit using various IT tools (software & application). The functions of the IT infrastructure, its associated risk and compliance requirement including IT controls has to be checked by internal auditors using standard IT audit framework. Managing IT risk Assessment, monitoring and testing controls. Auditors also create standard procedures for change management e.g. new software development software upgrade (applying patches), procedures for managing increasing volume of enterprise data in big data analytics, procedures for developing new security tools and application (cyber security & network security) and finally procedures for managing cloud computing/virtualization activities. In conclusion, managing all these with objective audit documentation and evidence approach while adhering to compliance requirements can be tasking. However with the help of audit tools, IT and analytical skills the internal auditor can ease

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