Top articles in Internal Audit Insights in 2016.

1. Auditing Corporate Culture: A New Imperative

The emerging flavor of the month in regulatory circles is the “culture of compliance,” with recognition that corporate culture has a profound influence on how an organization conducts its business. A culture that consistently places ethical considerations and client interests at the center of business decisions helps protect employees as well as investors and the integrity of the markets. Conversely, significant cultural failures can impose substantial harm on companies themselves including fines, penalties, and loss of reputation. more...

2. Internal Auditors Under Pressure to Alter Reports

Just about every internal auditor will face an ethical dilemma or difficult situation at some point in their career. Among the toughest scenarios is when the CEO or other senior executive exerts pressures to suppress or change the results of an audit finding because it reflects poorly on management or some other aspect of the business. A new report indicates, however, that it's an all-too-common occurrence. more...

3. Hallmarks of a World-Class IT Audit Shop

As the use of information technology continues to proliferate so do the associated risks organizations face. The massive cyber heist affecting more than 100 financial institutions in some 32 countries is only the latest in a spate of data security breaches worldwide. Losses from the attack, disclosed in February 2015, eventually could exceed $1 billion. During the past 10 years, hackers have infiltrated millions of files of customers at eBay, Target, Sony, Heartland Payment Systems and others. Such incidents underscore the importance of an organization having not only a good IT audit department, but one that's world class. more...

4.

Many companies are having a difficult time finding qualified staffers for the internal audit department or keeping their star performers from moving on to take other offers or to other departments. Meanwhile, the complexion of the typical internal audit department is starting to change. CPAs with backgrounds in finance and accounting and Big Four experience are giving way to internal auditors who've worked as risk managers, fraud specialists, data scientists, technologists, and in other disciplines. more...

5. Internal Audit Pay Expected to Rise in 2017

Salaries of internal audit and IT audit professionals are expected to increase by an average of 3.9 percent in 2017, according to the latest annual salary guide from staffing firm Robert Half. The guide, which projects salary increases for several professional occupations next year based on data gathered by specialized recruiters throughout the firm's U.S. offices, indicates that pay for internal auditors will increase by more than the 3.6 percent average of all professional occupations and even more than those in other accounting and finance fields, which are forecast to rise at 3.7 percent. more...

6.

For the last few years internal audit executives have fretted over finding the right people to staff a department that is taking on several new roles. Now, it appears those concerns are only deepening. Among the top problems internal audit shops face is finding good people to hire. "Companies are really struggling to find people with the skill set required for today's internal auditor," says Sandy Pundmann, U.S. internal audit practice lead at Deloitte. more...

7.

As the fallout from the Wells Fargo fraud case continues, several questions still linger. Chief among them is if CEO John Stumpf will continue to hang on to his job. During a congressional hearing on the scandal on Tuesday, Senator Elizabeth Warren (MA-D) called on the CEO to resign and for a criminal investigation into the fraudulent activity at the bank. Another big question is whether similar behavior was taking place at other big banks. more...

8.

In this podcast, Joseph McCafferty, head of audit content at the MIS Training Institute, talks with Brian Barnier, a principal at ValueBridge Advisors and an OCEG fellow, about the role of controls in audit and risk management and their limitations. According to Barnier, although controls are the centerpiece of many audit, compliance, governance, and risk-management programs, they are often ineffective. He says they are difficult to implement, maintain, and use and often don’t work. They can even be harmful, Barnier says, since they can offer a false sense of security. more...

9.

Newsflash: Millennials don't stay in their jobs very long. They lack loyalty and focus. And they need oodles and oodles of positive reinforcement. So say the several surveys and reports that portend to put their finger on the pulse of the generation born roughly between 1980 and 2000 and tell us how to relate to these skateboard-riding, texting-obsessed, criticism-adverse, video game junkies with short attention spans. They tell us to throw away the management strategies we've been honing for decades and get ready to do some coddling. Millennials are different, they say, and need a special kind of handling. I might be bucking conventional wisdom here, but I'm not buying it.. more...

10.

The U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission are on something of a roll lately in bringing corruption cases to fruition under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Together, the agencies concluded 26 enforcement actions against companies and individualsincluding three cases where regulators declined to prosecute but enforced strict reformsthrough the first half of 2016, according to the FCPA Blog, which tracks such cases. That's more than the 20 enforcement actions the DoJ and SEC jointly concluded in all of 2015, including nine declinations. And most experts expect the second half to be just as active in terms of corruption enforcement. more...