The world we live in continues to move faster than ever before and we are being asked to do more with less. However, the one thing that seems to remain the same is the fact that we all have deadlines to meet. No matter what you do to plan for potential obstacles in meeting those deadlines, something new can arise that can impede your ability to stay on track. Long gone are the days of having an internal audit plan that will not change during the year. Instead, internal audit departments must be more agile than ever to meet the demands that come with change.
Ad hoc requests from the BOD and Management due to changes in business climate continue to increase and present challenges in keeping planned audits on track. This impacts scheduling, because auditees now have competing high-priority items that tend to delay audits as they try to meet the demands of their stakeholders. The solution to overcoming these deadlines lies in agile auditing.
So what is agile auditing? It’s the ability to adjust on a moment’s notice to focus on more important items while still sufficiently meeting the overall objective of the audit plan. This means that the timing of an audit may be more fluid in order to meet another high-priority ad hoc request from Management. It may mean revisiting whether all of the originally planned audit objectives are absolutely necessary to meet to achieve the desired outcome. This impacts how internal audit departments determine how best to utilize their available resources.
In order to meet these types of demands, internal audit departments must have a bench of flex resources. You can accomplish this by doing a couple of things. You can implement a guest auditor program and utilize company resources. This can be a great way to build that bench of flex resources but can take some time to build and there are always competing commitments with guest auditor resources that can make immediate staffing requirements challenging. Alternatively, you can also engage a third party to provide resources on an as-needed basis that tend to be quickly deployed and meet the specific skills and requirements of those audits.
Do you foresee an issue meeting your deadlines? VIP provides solutions by developing a plan for flex staffing and providing flex resources. Help us, help you by getting in touch as soon as possible.