Insights from Internal Audit 2018: Key takeaways from our annual conference

Grab a coffee and discover the key takeaways for audit leaders from Internal Audit 2018. We’ve created four themes to share our thoughts. Time to sit back and reflect if you came…or see what you missed if you couldn’t make it this year! Hold the 2019 dates, 29-30 October.


Trust

In relation to rebuilding trust in business the issue was raised that almost all the FTSE contract with the Big 4 for external audit. What is the alternative? What might the Kingman and Competition and Markets Authority reviews find? David Styles, corporate governance director, FRC, thought it not improbable for a firm to collapse again aka Arthur Andersen. As auditors perhaps we should raise the topic of contingency planning, sharing working papers and knowledge transfer where firms are used extensively for non-audit activities. And the question remains what exposures would really arise from awarding the external audit contact to a mid-tier/smaller firm?

Ben Page, chief executive, Ipsos MORI said that trust equalled doing more than what the regulations require. There are issues of trust but often our perceptions are skewed to the realities. What we worry about we over exaggerate statistically, we then believe the numbers and worry more. It becomes a vicious cycle. His takeaway was to remember that things are actually pretty good at the moment! Page reminded delegates that we’re never likely to see a newspaper headline about being normal or doing well it’s always a sensationalised drama. As audit leaders are we alert to the exaggerated statistics and stories within our organisations, our teams, the worry points. Do you allow yourself to waste precious resource on a headline concern raised by the audit committee? Is it not incumbent on us as audit leaders to head them off with the real facts to instil objectivity and generate…