CHAPTER 18 Reporting Internal Audit Results

An internal audit report is a formal document where an internal audit function summarizes its work on an audit project by reporting its observations and recommendations based on that audit. Audit reports are the most important end product of the internal auditing process and are a major vehicle to describe internal audit’s activities for people both inside and outside of the enterprise. Audit reports provide evidence about the professional character of internal audit activities and allow others to evaluate this contribution. Effective audit reports, of course, must be supported by high-quality audit fieldwork and evidence evaluation, as discussed in Chapter 10, but that same audit fieldwork can be nullified by poorly written or prepared reports. The preparation of clear and effective reports should be a major concern for internal auditors at all levels, from the chief audit executive (CAE) to audit team staff members. The understanding of how to construct and draft an effective internal audit report is a basic common body of knowledge (CBOK) requirement.

Good internal audit reporting is more than just report preparation and appearance. Audit reports should reflect the basic philosophy of an enterprise’s total internal audit approach, including its underlying review objectives, supporting strategies and major policies, procedures covering the audit work, and the professional performance of the audit staff. While the audit report is ...

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