Not so long ago, internal audits revolved around manual processes and managing complex spreadsheets, in-fact this is still often the case. Times have however changed in the past couple of decades and internal auditing has become not only an essential process for business success but also a mandatory requirement. Challenges and complexities continue to grow just as technology continues to evolve into the cloud. Nowadays, businesses are able to wholly use electronic records which are stored in the cloud, reducing the burden of paper trails. The following article explores the value of using GRC software to manage internal audits.
Why are Internal Audits important?
Internal audits typically refer to the pre-emptive process of evaluating and improving the overall effectiveness of governance, risk management and control processes within an organization. While it may seem like internal audits are mostly about assessing internal processes, they also focus on the overall well-being and success of the organization in question.
Mandatory ISO 27001 9.2 requirement
Internal audits are now a mandatory requirement if you’re looking to keep your organization compliant with the ISO 27001 information security management standard. ISO 27001 is an internationally auditable standard that clearly defines the requirements for an Information Security Management System (ISMS).
Clause 9.2 of ISO 27001 specifically requires an organization to conduct internal audits periodically to provide insights into whether its ISMS conforms with its own requirements, complies with the ISO 27001, or whether the ISMS is effectively implemented and maintained.
Being ISO 27001 compliant demonstrates that your organization has taken proactive steps to identify risks and their impacts, and also put controls in place to limit their impact on your business. If you’re concerned about information Security best-practice, the ISO 27001 is the global benchmark.
Good corporate governance
By performing internal audits, your organization will be displaying good corporate governance as it evaluates the company’s internal controls and ensures compliance with relevant laws, regulations, and also provides the opportunity for corrective/preventative actions prior to an external audit.
Internal audits bring a disciplined approach to your organization’s GRC processes, consequently leading to an increase in overall productivity.
Improved Stakeholders’ confidence
Since internal audits essentially deal with factors that affect an organization’s survival, performing internal audits will help boost stakeholders’ confidence on how well it is performing.
Fraud Detection and Quality Assurance
By regularly performing internal audits in your organization, you’re more likely to uncover evidence of fraud and even areas of wastage and abuse. Using GRC software to manage internal audits also means that you can do this regularly and with less stress.
Using a GRC solution will enable you to perform different types of Audits
Without GRC software like StandardFusion, your organization will most likely be limited in the types of internal audit activities they can perform. This is however not the case when you implement a full GRC solution. The following highlights internal audit activities StandardFusion’s GRC solution will allow you to perform.
- Audit Requirements and/or Controls
- Audit specific controls or processes with high risk, rate of change or failure that need regular auditing.
- Track and monitor corrective and preventative actions
- Track and monitor major and minor non conformances
Additional Benefits of using a full GRC software to manage Internal Audits
StandardFusion’s GRC auditing solution essentially makes life easy by eliminating the complexities of manually managing the different stages or processes involved in the internal audit. Using StandardFusion’s GRC software solution to manage your internal audits has immense benefits, some of which are highlighted below.
StandardFusion eliminates the complexities associated with tracking audits by allowing you to do this from a user-friendly dashboard. With StandardFusion, you can easily track your audit trail and monitor all the activities required to complete the audit.
Since StandardFusion provides a complete overview of your internal audit, you can easily detect what needs to be completed and delegate tasks to the right team member where necessary.
Complete Audit History
StandardFusion also allows you to maintain a complete audit history from the beginning to the end of all your transactions. This can be very beneficial as it can potentially result in fraud prevention, stress free external audits, and even help position your organization to receive funding. In addition, historical data provides more value for understanding future audits and remaining compliant over a long period of time.
Perform Audits on the actual controls you have in place
Since StandardFusion allows you to view all the processes and controls relevant to your organization, you’re able to focus your auditing efforts on the actual controls you have in place rather than carrying out a general audit. This leads to savings in time and resources, consequently resulting in improved efficiency and accurate reporting.
Times are changing fast and in today’s business world, time is truly of the essence. More businesses are steadily making the switch and opting to use a GRC software solution to manage their internal audits.
StandardFusion offers a highly intuitive GRC software solution that makes compliance and risk management simple and straightforward, just as it should be. You can request a demo today to see firsthand how StandardFusion truly takes the complexities away from managing your internal audits.