More and more companies chose to use international recognised standards to implement and certify their management system. Some of the more popular ones are ISO 9001 (Quality), ISO 14001 (Environmental), ISO 27001 (Information Security) and ISO 45001 (Occupational Health & Safety). All of these require to develop an internal audit program and we will look at some of the benefits from outsourcing your ISO internal audits.
Importance of an ISO internal Audit Function
It is important that business entities assess their internal control processes on a continual basis in order to work more proficiently. ISO internal audit plays a fundamental role in any organisation, but despite of its significance it is disregarded sometimes. In reality, a lot of companies consider it as a routine task. Some companies seek for other solutions like outsourcing of the internal audit solutions, as it gives immediate access to expert knowledge and impartial assessments.
What is an Internal Audit Function?
Now initially, in advance of having a reasoned gaze at the internal audit solution we should know what an internal audit function is. According to the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), internal audit is:
- An independent, objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve on an organisation’s operations.
It also mentions that internal audit facilitates a business entity in the realisation of its objectives as it offers an organised approach to assess and increase risk management effectiveness and monitor business practices.
Role of Internal Auditors
When an organisation utilizes the services of an auditor they can help in defining areas of improvement as well as provide them information required to achieve its desired goals. Those business entities that bring in a third party auditor periodically, often have better chances of improved performance, have better risk management, enhanced regulatory conformity and improved management control.
Benefits of Internal Audit Function
Furthermore, an independent internal audit assessment facilitates in controlling the employment cost associated to the internal audit function. A lot of organisations may lack the amount and cash flow to maintain a full-time audit team. An important benefit of outsourcing is that independent consultants have specialised knowledge across industries and offer an in-depth understanding during the audit. Independent professionals are often aware of the issues that are both general and industry-specific and can therefore offer their assistance across those areas to help in mitigation of the risks and reduce significant harmful effect on the company.
Moreover, an independent internal audit evaluation facilitates in having an impartial review in relation to the organisation’s operation specific to the industry. It gives an opportunity to share new ideas in order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of business operations, develop internal management system, and decrease risk elements. Likewise, this activity usually causes the development of benchmarks that can be utilized by the company management and its workforce to measure and improve organisation’s performance. An independent approach by using external consultation and consideration of best practices across industries can be very useful. It allows an organisation to create a series of operational standards that can be helpful for the internal audit team to observe and review conformity, which results in a more in-depth internal audit function.
If you are considering to implement an internal audit function or to outsource it, please don’t hesitate to contact us for a free consultation on how we can support with your project.