Developing an Overall Audit Plan

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Developing an Overall Audit Plan
Pamela Patterson, Member
Risk is the foremost consideration. Where in the business is the largest risk?
To determine where the risk is, the audit management should develop an overall audit plan, seeking input from business management, the audit committee, risk functions, external auditors, CFO, legal, etc.

Developing an Overall Audit Plan is Complex
This is a good idea, but I think it will be complex to implement this kind of "overall audit". Anyway, COSO principles push us to realise an environment internal control.
Don't forget to consider the size of companies, weight of past, organisational change...

How to Develop an Overall Audit Plan to Mitigate Risks?
@CHARLES A.C. DALMEIDA: Really this is another area where all of us go and find gaps, yet we don't contribute or add value to the investors expectations.
The issue is when you want to follow audit plans for risk mitigation, How do you go about it? Here's a generic way forward:
- Understand the firm's objectives, its performance history.
- Find out its ways of performing tasks and duties and to achieve such outputs and outcomes.
- Find out if the operational managers and directors are knowledgeable about their duties, understand staff compliments and job profiling.
- Perform risk profiling, ranking the risks for each department. How do you do this? Get policy documents for each department and together with all of them rank the risks in agreement with the departmental heads.
- Therefrom, rank these risks according to your professional outlook.
- Include these ranked risks in your audit plan to be discussed with your CEO
- Get it to the audit committee for final discussion.
- Then implement your annual audit risk based audit plan.
The process is long, tough and enough to draw attention, especially in the value for money audit or operational auditing and fraud risk management.



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