According to The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA), the internal audit function is a value adding function for organisations. The internal audit function adds value to the organisation by improving opportunities to achieve organisational objectives, identifying operational improvement, and/or reducing risk exposure through both assurance and advisory services. In Denmark, there is no legal requirement for non-financial organisations to establish an internal audit function and we can observe that there are relatively few non-financial organisations that choose to do so.
That raises a question mark about The IIA’s claim about an internal audit function being a value adding function. This incoherency between an internal audits alleged value creation and a lack of organisations choosing to establish an internal audit function has led to this study, which aims to investigate if an internal audit function really can add value to Danish non-financial organisations and under which conditions value creation can be reached.
This study has found that an internal audit function has the potential to add value to Danish non-financial organisations, mainly in areas such as Operational audits, Risk Management and Compliance, but that there is a misperception of what an internal audit function is and what it does. Through this study, we see indications which seem to confirm the general problem for the internal audit profession that it is perceived as the external audits “Right hand” in auditing, and that it has challenges in breaking away from that perception amongst stakeholders who have not yet established an internal audit function.
Therefore, to be able to show its value creation, we recommend that the internal audit profession shows how they differentiate themselves from external auditors and other control functions within the organisation. In this regard, the authors of this thesis have developed a definition of what an internal audit function does and how they are different from other functions.
Furthermore, the study has found that there appears to be a shift towards having a more proactive approach towards audit engagements through advisory services in a bid to enhance value creation, both internationally and in Denmark. By taking a more proactive approach towards audit engagements, the internal audit can mitigate emerging risks instead of reacting to already materialized risks.
|Educations||MSc in Auditing, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis|
|Number of pages||185|