Technology-enabled internal audit

Are internal audit departments effectively responding to emerging risks and opportunities?

Are internal audit departments effectively responding to emerging risks and opportunities? And how can they play a key role in accelerating the firm’s digital revolution? Accompanied by two use cases we argue how the internal audit can accomplish this by embedding technology at the core of the audit approach through the integration of data analytics and the effective use of cognitive analytics.

In early 2016 KPMG and Forbes surveyed ([Loon16-1]) more than 400 chief financial officers and audit committee chairs and found that 90% of the respondents feel their internal audit function is not adequately identifying and responding to emerging risks. The common theme was that internal audit (IA) needs to be more proactive in iden- tifying and mitigating risk, not just assessing the controls already in place. And one of the identified challenges for internal audit is to use more technology, data and analytics in their audit approach and methodology.

It is no longer useful to utter phrases like ‘technology is the future’. If companies are not fully integrating techno- logical advancements in every area of business, no degree of strategic prowess is going to make a measurable impact. How internal audit is conducted is no exception and technology lies at the core of how to manage current and emerging risks ([Loon16-2]).

The question is how can IA embed technology in its audit approach and methodology and support their organization to effectively respond to emerging risks and opportunities but accelerate its digital revolution? Below we discuss two themes that lie at the core of this question.

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