June 2020

June 29, 2020

Documentary Puts a Human Face on Internal Auditing, Accounting

It isn’t often that people use the words inspiring and uplifting in the same sentence as internal auditing and accounting, but a new documentary appearing on the program “Roadtrip Nation,” produced in collaboration with the Center for Audit Quality (CAQ), accomplishes just that.

Making It Balance: Will the Work Be Worth It?” introduces viewers to three aspiring accountants who embark on a road trip to discover whether accounting and auditing will fulfill their career objectives. They spend several weeks traveling across the country interviewing accounting and audit professionals, from former Deloitte CEO and current WNBA Commissioner Cathy Englebert to Bryan Ford, a New Orleans entrepreneur and blogger who quit less than a year into his accounting career to follow his passion for baking.…

June 22, 2020

Life With a Quarantined Auditor

The COVID-19 pandemic has forced most of the world into isolation, as public health officials in nations around the world work to limit the spread of the disease. This has created a variety of stresses as people are forced into close quarters and unfamiliar social dynamics emerge. This can be particularly stressful to the families and friends of internal auditors.

While I have worked for many years to disprove stereotypes about internal audit practitioners being boring or obsessive, one has to admit that living in close quarters with a driven personality for an extended period might become challenging.

As I’ve written before, internal auditors are a serious bunch.…

June 15, 2020

What New IIA Survey Reveals About Pandemic’s Impact and Year Ahead for Internal Audit

The U.S. internal audit profession has navigated several watershed events in the past 40 years: the savings and loan crisis in the 1980s, the financial reporting frauds in the early 2000s, and the financial crisis/Great Recession barely a decade later. Without a doubt, the profession emerged stronger after each of those crises. 

The dramatic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 are leaving their mark on internal audit as well, according to a new survey from The IIA’s Audit Executive Center (AEC). Responses from nearly 500 U.S. and Canadian internal audit leaders reflect deep reductions anticipated in internal audit travel and training, some staffing decreases, and a growing awareness that being agile, flexible, and tech savvy will be fundamental for all audit functions in the future.…

June 8, 2020

Audit Reporting at the Speed of Risk: 4 Strategies for Success

News last week of improvement in the U.S. jobless situation brought a glimmer of hope that, perhaps, the very worst may be behind us. At least for now. But disruption continues to engulf our personal and professional lives, as the twin impacts of the coronavirus COVID-19 — health and economic — reach ever deeper into virtually every organization on the planet. Internal auditors are wrestling with risks that continue to emerge at warp speed and myriad challenges from working remotely, exasperated by a lack of crucial face-to-face communications.

However, by all accounts, the profession is demonstrating agility and proving its resilience.…

June 1, 2020

Independent Federal IGs Are Essential to Effectiveness and Integrity

Following a series of government scandals in the 1970s, U.S. Congress passed the Inspector General Act, mandating the establishment of independent inspectors general (IGs) in federal agencies. Today, there are more than 70 IGs serving organizations large and small across the federal government. Thirty of those are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate.

These men and women are leading teams of auditors, inspectors, and investigators with the avowed mission to promote economy, efficiency, and effectiveness in their respective agencies, and to prevent and detect fraud and abuse in programs and operations of the agencies they serve. I know something of this community, because I once served as Deputy Inspector General of the U.S.…