If an audit plan is to comprise assignments that add value, there should be a reasonable understanding between stakeholders and internal audit of the specific value each assignment should deliver. In order to achieve this, there should be a flow of information from the audit planning process into the assignment scoping and planning process. This often requires keeping track of why an assignment was put on the audit plan. Many CAEs find this question is one that they or their management team are best placed to answer, since they are often those who best understand the reasons why an assignment was selected.
However, there may be occasions when assignments have been placed on the plan without particular clarity about the value being sought from the assignment. If this is the case, perhaps because the audit plan was not developed with a strong orientation towards adding value, it is still quite possible to achieve a significant step-up in the value add and efficiency of each and every assignment through a strong assignment planning process.
The starting point for achieving a step up in the value add from assignments comes from thinking carefully about the objectives, scope and plan of each and every proposed assignment from a lean perspective.
It is common practice (and expected in the IIA’s standards) that internal auditors should develop a plan for each assignment, covering ...