We are conscious of how irritating it can be to have auditors come along and
either state the obvious or ignore the problems or constraints that you have to
deal with. To overcome this we have a robust approach towards quality control, aimed
at ensuring that:
- there is adequate communication with managers;
- our operational procedures include adequate checks; and
- our auditors are properly trained and motivated.
The Head of Internal Audit places considerable importance on obtaining feedback
from customers and any suggestions you make to improve our service are actively
When the Final Report is issued, a questionnaire will be included allowing managers
to provide feedback on the all stages of the audit. All comments concerning the
conduct of the audit, both positive and negative are welcomed as it provides us
with invaluable feedback on our service.
External Quality Assurance (or Who audits the Auditors)
As part of the Government Internal Audit Standards (GIAS) the Head of Internal
Audit is required to make provision for external reviews to be commissioned periodically
from appropriately qualified and independent reviewers (Standard 10). These reviews
should be undertaken at least once every 5 years and should appraise:
- the terms of reference for the internal audit function;
- the independence and objectivity of internal audit;
- the efficiency and effectiveness of the approach to formulating the audit
strategy and plans;
- the quality of supervision;
- compliance with these standards;
- compliance with the local audit manual; and
- achievement of performance standards / indicators.
The sponsors for the external quality review are the Accounting Officers within
each of the Councils. Following an external review, the Head of Internal Audit should
develop a programme for addressing any weaknesses identified and agree an action
plan. Progress against any such action plans should be reported in the annual audit
reports to Councils.
Reviews are undertaken using the
Internal Audit Quality Assessment Framework (IAQAF) which is a tool for evaluating
the quality of the internal audit service in an organisation.
||A sound system of internal control likely to achieve the system objectives,
and which is operating effectively in practice.
||A basically sound system of internal control, but where there are a
few weaknesses that may put achievement of some system objectives at risk.
||A system of internal control that is satisfactory in part, but which
contains a number of weaknesses that are likely to undermine the achievement
of system objectives and leave it vulnerable to material error/abuse or
||An unacceptable system of internal control, containing fundamental weaknesses
creating serious doubts over the achievement of system objectives and leaving
it vulnerable to significant error/abuse.