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Lean Auditing: Driving Added Value and Efficiency in Internal Audit by James C. Paterson

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Introduction

If you are reading these words, I imagine you have some interest in lean or in audit, or both, and may be wondering how these disciplines might be combined.

This is what I wondered in 2005 when I was Chief Audit Executive (CAE) for AstraZeneca PLC. Lean was suggested to me as something that could help the audit function step up its “added value” contribution, as well as improve its productivity.

I was uncertain at first about the applicability and usefulness of lean tools and techniques to internal auditing. But, as we learned about lean, and started to apply it, we were able to create a number of best practice ways of working and also achieved significant productivity gains (of around 20%).

This book outlines what lean can offer to internal auditing. It is based on over four years' experience applying these techniques as a CAE. Thereafter, I have been running my own company and lean auditing has been one of the core areas of my training and consulting work. I have been fortunate to travel to the US, across the UK and Europe, the Middle East, the Far East and Australia to share lean auditing principles and techniques. I have been heartened by the interest in what I have had to say, and in the results that have been achieved by applying these ways of working.

As I prepared to write this book, I was keen to ensure that the efforts of other CAEs and auditors who are working to improve the impact of internal audit should also be captured. I therefore interviewed a number ...

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