CBOK Report: Women in Internal Auditing


The Institute of Internal Auditors’ (IIA’s) 2015 Global Internal Audit Common Body of Knowledge (CBOK) Practitioner Survey reveals that women make up a large portion of the internal audit profession around the world; however, women still face considerable challenges as they navigate through their careers in internal auditing.

The report Women in Internal Auditing - Perspectives from Around the World has two goals:

  • To describe how women currently fit into the internal audit landscape around the world, based on results from the 2015 CBOK Practitioner Survey
  • To share perspectives and advice for achieving success as a woman in the internal auditing profession, using interviews and roundtable discussions conducted with chief audit executives (CAEs) from around the world

More than 5,400 women participated in the 2015 CBOK survey, representing 38% of total responses (31% of CAE responses). The male-to-female ratio varied widely across regions, but in general, women respondents composed a larger proportion of the younger, lower-level workforce (as compared to more senior levels of internal audit management). This suggests that as the relatively younger female workforce ages, more women will move into senior positions; however, survey responses related to professional development indicated that women were less likely to diversify their expertise in school or within professional specializations, and they self-assessed themselves lower in all 10 of the core competencies defined in The IIA’s Global Internal Audit Competency Framework, especially early in their careers. This suggests that many female internal auditors might benefit from mentoring and career guidance.

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