Auditing top management is, in many instances, seen as a sensitive issue. If we consider each top management activity as a normal organizational process, it becomes easier to focus on determining whether the outputs of their activities are effective. For an auditing process to be effective, organizations must audit the processes associated with top management. These processes include strategic planning, the establishment of policies and objectives, ensuring effective communication and the availability of resources.
When venturing the internal audit of top management, the collection, and corroboration of the evidence of top management’s commitment from within the quality management system should be done. It should be asked that how the quality manual addresses management commitment issues and ask how they are accomplished. The auditor must find objective confirmation that proves it’s actually being done.
An internal audit is generally completed in four steps. An internal audit manager in Dubai will have to follow the said steps:
- Planning: During the first part of the internal audit, the client of the audit is notified by the auditor. The scope and the objective of the examination in a formal meeting with the management of the organization is discussed. Information about important processes, evaluation existing controls is gathered and the remaining audit steps are planned. This program outlines the fieldwork necessary to achieve the objectives of the audit.
- Fieldwork: This focuses on transaction testing and informal communications. During this phase, the auditor determines whether the controls identified during the preliminary review are operating properly and according to the standard operating procedures of the organization. These procedures test major internal controls and accuracy of the propriety of the transactions. It concludes with a list if important findings by which the draft of the audit report is prepared.
- Audit report: After completion of the fieldwork, the audit findings, conclusions, and recommendations necessary are summarized in a working paper and a discussion draft. Audit management thoroughly reviews these papers and it is submitted to the client, and it is discussed in a meeting to reach a conclusion about the audit findings. A formal draft is then created including revisions from the meeting, and a final report is issued.
- Follow up review: Internal Audit performs a follow-up review after some time to verify the resolution of the report’s findings. The client’s response to the final report is reviewed, and the actions are taken to resolve the audit report findings are tested to ensure that the expected results are achieved. All unresolved findings are discussed in the follow-up report. The review will conclude with a follow-up report.
Each step of the checklist should be followed strictly, and client participation is vital to a successful audit.