Data Analytics Mandate Part I

Before you can determine where to go and how to get there, you must figure out where you are.

The concept of data analytics has become a mandate for internal audit functions. The question isn’t 'if'; it isn’t even 'when.' The time is now; the question is how?

If you have not yet started or have only dabbled in the world of data analytics, it is time to learn about it and recognize the potential value you can contribute to your organization by implementing even a basic foundation and building on it as you appreciate the full value and power of information.

Is it a daunting proposition? It can be, and there is a learning curve, but even small audit functions can take advantage of the power that data analytics can provide. It can further your reach into and visibility within your organization, allowing you to stay relevant and contribute to your organization’s betterment by providing greater value.

“Analytics Refresher,” published almost five years ago in Internal Auditor magazine, is still on target today. “Internal audit can be a catalyst for expanding the use of analytics through the company to provide greater, more holistic business insights,” states the article’s author, Neil White. Those who are not fully engaging in data analytics can enhance their organizational profile and usefulness by making it a priority to introduce data analytics into the audit plan.

This is the first of two primers on the topic. Understanding data analytics and its potential benefits are covered in this issue. Part 2 will review strategies and tactics for those in the early stages of data analytics adoption or have yet to begin. 

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