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Giving Internal Audit An Effective Mandate

Dan Swanson | July 5, 2006

Internal auditing’s unique position within a company provides management and audit committee members with valuable assistance, by giving objective assurance on governance, risk management and control processes. For internal audit to be effective, however, the mandate of the internal audit function must be clearly defined, agreed to by all stakeholders, and approved by the board.

Executive management and members of the audit committee are the two key stakeholders in most organizations, so involving them is critical to ensure the internal audit mandate is balanced and meets the needs of everyone in the company. Also, remember that resourcing is driven by the mandate; that is, an incomplete mandate will lead to inappropriate allocation of resources.

The Mandate: A Critical Success Factor

The authority of the internal audit department is documented in its internal audit charter. An important area to explore first is the role...

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