Harnessing the power of the internal audit code of practice

There has potentially never been a more important time for audit leaders; a time for objectivity, integrity and insight in a world that has turned on its axis. We look at two of the most important professional publications of recent times and how audit leaders can use them to best effect with their key stakeholders.

  • The Internal Audit Code of Practice (the Code): Launched in January 2020. Applies to all to organisations in the private and third sectors (separate codes and standards exist for the Public Sector and Financial Services).
  • Harnessing the Power of Internal Audit (HtP): Published in February 2019. Serves as a good corporate governance guide for audit committees, directors and audit leaders.

During the launch of the Code, Brendan Nelson, Chair of the audit committee at BP, and Chair of the steering committee that developed the code said that “too often after crises we hear people say ‘if only I’d understood this better’, the point of the Code is to help internal audit highlight the critical issues that executives need to be aware of before they reach crisis point.”

Fast forward a matter of weeks and the entire planet is in the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. There will be time for reflection and learning. Good governance alone cannot prevent failure, organisations, governments and global systems are complex.

There is however a real opportunity for audit leaders, as assurance providers and trusted advisors, to raise the bar on their professional offering and their own personal courage. These documents provide significant support with delivering tough messages, appraising difficult decisions, demonstrating strong leadership and advocating good governance.

A 30 second summary

It is vital to understand that these documents were designed to be shared, read and referred to; they can only reach their audience with your help.…