Internal audit

Internal audit provides feedback on government management practices and activities, at both the departmental/agency and horizontal levels. The function assists in promoting the overall effectiveness and efficiency of government operations and the transparency of decision making.

Internal audit provides deputy heads with assurance as to the design and operation of the governance, risk management, and control processes in their organizations. This assurance function is an important part of the government's efforts to provide value and accountability to Canadians for their tax dollars.

The results of internal audits help to identify emerging issues and make recommendations for the improvement of performance.

Internal Audit Sector

The Internal Audit Sector of the Office of the Comptroller General of Canada is responsible for the Policy on Internal Audit and the health of the federal government internal audit community. In performing this role, we support the commitment of the Comptroller General to strengthen public sector stewardship, accountability, risk management and internal control across government.

The Internal Audit Sector has the following areas of responsibility: policy and professional practices; internal audit community development and engagement; and audit operations.

Policy and Communities

The Policy and Professional Practices unit focuses on the timely provision of advice and guidance and oversight to the audit community. This includes:

  • championing the value of the internal audit function;
  • monitoring and assessing policy implementation and compliance;
  • provide oversight and challenge support to departmental internal audit groups; and
  • developing policy, professional advice, standards and technology enablers, including data analytics.

The Internal Audit Communities unit provides a full range of initiatives to support internal audit capacity development and engagement. This includes:

  • recruiting and supporting departmental audit committees;
  • strengthening the professional human resources capacity of the internal audit community across the public service through capacity building and community development initiatives.
  • promoting community engagement through a variety of events and the exchange of best practices

Audit Operations

As the operational arm of the Internal Audit Sector, the Audit Operations unit provides a range of audit services to large and small departments and agencies.

This includes:

  • developing government-wide risk profiles for departments;
  • planning and coordinating horizontal assurance engagements across departments;
  • providing specific internal audit services to small departments and other selected departments and agencies; and
  • providing support to the Audit Committee for Small Departments and Agencies.

The Treasury Board Policy on Internal Audit

The Government of Canada's oversight regime is based on sound management practices, strong public service values and clear rules set out in legislation and Treasury Board policies.

The work by the Office of the Comptroller General (OCG) to strengthen financial management and internal audit practices supports effective and coherent decision-making, program development and implementation across government.

The Treasury Board's Policy on Internal Audit is pivotal to the government's efforts to improve and modernize its management practices and to further professionalize the IA function. The Policy provides a government-wide approach to the planning and implementation of internal audit activities in an effort to:

  • reinforce the independence and objectivity of the internal audit function;
  • increase the qualifications of professional internal auditors in the public sector; and
  • provide a clear, integrated division of responsibilities between the Comptroller General and the heads of departments and agencies.

Please also consult the Directive on Internal Audit.

Internal Audit Practitioners' Tools and Resources

Professional Organizations

Contact us

Your questions and comments are important to us. To contact the Internal Audit Sector, please use one of the means listed below:

90 Elgin Street,
Ottawa, ON K1A 0R5

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