When the International Professional Practices Framework (IPPF) was updated in 2015 to include the Core Principles for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing, it provided a significant opportunity to integrate and align these Principles into an internal audit activity’s quality assurance and improvement program (QAIP). The challenge is how to do it in a practical and meaningful way that provides incremental value to the internal audit activity and its stakeholders. This is especially relevant in today’s dynamic business environment, because demonstrating the effectiveness of Core Principles as a component of the QAIP supports the credibility and value of internal audit and promotes its role within the organization’s governance structure.
The best way to integrate Core Principles into the internal audit activity’s understanding of quality is to develop a concept and approach that is easy to understand, is adaptable to an individual organization, and provides insight into how effectively the Core Principles are being achieved. It also is important to understand how achieving Core Principles could be an integral component of the QAIP and an extension of the assessment process. Even though QAIP external assessments do not require auditors to evaluate conformance with the Core Principles, they are a mandatory element of the IPPF. As such, chief audit executives (CAEs) should have a perspective as to whether they are being achieved and a way to communicate that perspective to key stakeholders in a way that is easy to understand and can be monitored, measured, and reported over time.
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