‘Automation’, more effectively referred to as the Robotic Process Automation (RPA) is a concept that is widely put to use to automate the labor-intensive, mundane, repetitive tasks across all business verticals, and increasingly so in the internal audit activities of enterprise-level businesses. The internal audit department of an organization extensively requires manual processes executed to precision process after process. Hence over past years, internal audit departments have recognized an increasing need to automate their processes to achieve efficiency, mitigate potential risks and accuracy.

Why Automating The Internal Audit Process Is Essential To An Organization?

Internal audit is a labor-intensive and redundant process, and it is prone to errors in reporting and inaccuracy in representing the data. Non-alignment of the internal audit processes within the department and with the other departments of the organization poses a great threat to the smoothing functioning. Intensive data gathering and routinely follow up on the action items poses a challenge to bring about the required accuracy in the entire auditing process.

IT consulting firms take into consideration the aspects that hamper the internal audit process of an organization and essentially put forth how the auditors can record, track, and monitor the quantitative and qualitative processes of the organization. Intelligence automation essentially works on the principles of data analytics, cognitive, and artificial intelligence to automate the business and knowledge processes. The best suitable automation strategy is identified based on organizational needs. A custom automation strategy is adopted to encompass the varying auditing needs and a risk-based audit plan is carried out with a clear well-defined scope.

What Are The Key Considerations IT Consulting Firms Take Into Account To Automate Internal Audit Processes?

The first step entails in the key considerations is to identify the vision, scope, and the strategy to automate the internal audit process. IT consulting firms examine the existing state of the audit process of an organization, what are the challenges they face, and what automation strategy can be adopted, and clearly state the reasons for the same.

Embedding the intelligence automation process in an organization can be a single step implementation or may involve entire transformation depends on the expanse of the audit process an organization follows. For instance, organizations adopting a single step audit process may require a one-step automation embedding and its subsequent testing, whereas the organizations that follow audit steps may require a ground-up disruptive transformation to automate their internal audit processes. Either of the strategies, a well-defined communication, and an implementation plan is put forth.

The next consideration of the process is to ensure and establish the required infrastructure to implement and deploy the intelligent automation of the internal audit processes. Ensuring the required infrastructure facilitates the ease of maintenance and risk mitigation plans. A part of this consideration involves enhanced governance to ensure that the organization hs the right candidate to implement the internal audit processes. Having an effective change management protocol is important to address the changes that arise in implementing the automation of the audit process. The continuous testing and monitoring of the automation tasks implemented and exception handling and processing requires agile change methodologies to be adopted by the organizations.

The third consideration that the IT consulting firms take into account is to create a target state operating model that assesses the readiness of the people, process, and the technology that would involve in bringing about the automotive transformation in the internal audit processes of an organization. Restructuring the operating model of an organization where its 3 key elements, namely people, process, and technology intersect to achieve the larger goal of an organization.

Key Benefits Of Adopting Intelligence Automation In Internal Audit Processes

The benefits of automating the internal audit processes are many and varied. Some of the indispensable benefits are:

  • Achieving par excellence audit efficiency. With the automated audit, workflow renders error-free output with no inconsistencies in the audit processes.
  • Better risk management plan. With the automated audit processes, organizations witness improved transparency and efficiency which help them to be better prepared for any unforeseeable risks. Risk mitigation and better management of the risk becomes an intrinsic part of automating the process. The severity and the likely occurrence of the risk are evaluated well ahead of time leaving organizations well equipped to tackle the risks better.
  • Effective use of scarce resources. Automating the internal audit processes requires less manual labor and hence the manual intensive tasks can be saved for other important decision-making capabilities of the organization.
  • Higher quality output with reduced costs. The automation of the internal audit allows for greater accuracy of the processes. By reducing the time-consuming laborious processes, the organizations greatly reduce the operational costs that are associated with it.
  • Added business value. Automating the internal audit processes reduces the turnaround time of the overall process which adds value to the business by providing greater insights into analytics and reporting.

Key Takeaways From Implementing The Intelligent Automation In Internal Audit

The internal audit department of any organization plays a critical role in any business, for it can make or break any organization. Identifying the potential to automate the audit process of an organization is the key to bring about transformative change in an organization. Strategizing intelligence automation techniques is the cornerstone of any business. The automation of the processes involved in the audit process augments the human capabilities which have the potential to take an organization to the level of par excellence by improving the quality and consistency of the audit processes.