Report on the Key Compliance Attributes of the Internal Audit Function: May 31, 2021
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The Internal Audit and Evaluation Bureau (IAEB) helps the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat (TBS) meet its objectives by providing valued advice to senior management for decision-making. The internal audit function provides this advice by taking a systematic, disciplined approach to improving the effectiveness of processes for risk management, control and governance. In doing so, the function provides independent and objective assurance that TBS’s activities are managed in a way that demonstrates responsible stewardship.
The IAEB conducts its audit work in accordance with:
- the Treasury Board Policy on Internal Audit
- the Institute of Internal Auditors’ International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing (the Standards)
The Directive on Internal Audit requires that all departments provide information on key compliance attributes to demonstrate the professionalism, performance and impact of their internal audit function. The attributes are not performance measures, and no targets are attached.
Professionalism of staff
Collectively, internal audit staff at TBS make up a diverse and multidisciplinary team that has the requisite knowledge, skills and other competencies to fulfill their responsibilities (refer to Table 1). In addition, the IAEB has a staff member who has advanced knowledge of data analytics.
|Designation or certification||Percentage of staff|
|Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) or Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA)table 1 note *table 1 note †||55%|
|CIA or CPA in progress||27%|
|Other designationstable 1 note † (Certified Government Auditing Professional (CGAP), Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), Certification in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA) and others)||18%|
Table 1 Notes
Professional practices and quality assurance
The internal audit function at TBS conducts its work in conformance with the Standards. Information related to its activities, including status updates of ongoing engagements, human resources initiatives and follow-up on audit recommendations, are presented at each meeting of the TBS Audit Committee.
A self-assessment was conducted to evaluate conformance with the Institute of Internal Auditors’ Code of Ethics and the Standards. The results were provided to the Audit Committee in November 2020.
An external assessment was last completed in December 2016. It is anticipated that an external practice inspection will be launched in summer 2021 and that final results will be presented by December 2021.
Risk-based audit plan and related information
The assurance and advisory engagements conducted by the IAEB are planned based on the approved, multi-year Integrated Audit and Evaluation Plan. The plan is reviewed and discussed at meetings of the TBS Audit Committee and the TBS Performance Measurement and Evaluation Committee. Planned engagements are adjusted to reflect any changes to the priorities, risks and needs of TBS. Details on the audit and review engagements for 2020–21 are listed in Table 2.
|Project||Status||Date of report approval||Date of publication||Planned completion of management action plan||Implementation status|
|Audit of TBS Pay Controls||Completed||July 22, 2020||February 16, 2021||March 31, 2021||20% completed: delays due to the impact of the pandemic on operations|
|Lesson Learned from the Office of the Auditor General’s Audits on Rapid Decision-Making||Completed||August 2020||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Advisory: Inventory of Human Resources and Pay Controls||Completed||November 2020||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Risk Assessment of the Benefit and Insurance Plans||Completed||January 2021||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Advisory: Review of the Governance Structure for the Exploratory phase of NextGen HR and Pay for the Business Owner||Completed||April 2021||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Advisory: Joint Review of the Union Dues Interface Process for the Public Service Alliance of Canada||Completed||May 2021||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Audit of Acquisition Cards||Reporting phase||Pending||Pending||Pending||Pending|
|Advisory: [Government of Canada Financial and Materiel Management] GCfm Readiness Assessment||Reporting phase||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Advisory: Review of Documenting Decision-Making (Guidance on the Use of Code 699)||Reporting phase||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Advisory: Authorities Analysis for the Business Owner of Government of Canada Travel||Reporting phase||n/a||n/a||n/a||n/a|
|Cyclical Staffing Assessment||Planning phase||Pending||Pending||Pending||Pending|
Value added to management
While surveys were not sent to senior management to measure the usefulness of the areas audited, input from the audited organization was solicited when the results were presented at the TBS Audit Committee. Senior management indicated a high level of satisfaction with the value-added provided by the IAEB to the committee.
An indication of the credible support provided by the IAEB to senior management is that the demand, from senior management, for advisory engagements and strategic and objective advice from the IAEB is surpassing the IAEB’s capacity.
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