Internal Audit Emerging Risks for 2021 and Beyond – Part 1

Field: Auditing | Delivery Method: Self Study | CPE Hours: 1.5

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The world has changed. 2020 was an unprecedented year for all professions. Internal auditors were faced with a tremendous impact to their audit plans causing refocus and realignment of not just projects but resources. As a profession, internal auditors have traditionally focused on past events or as some would say, taking the “look in the rear view mirror. Most financial or accounting professionals can look at previous year data and tell management where past mistakes were made.

With the evolving landscape, risks and economy that have been spurred on by the pandemic of 2021, internal auditors must look to stretch their skills to areas that are most valued by their organizations. Today's insight may well be tomorrow's hindsight.
Stakeholders seek to navigate the future more than revisit the past or dwell in the present. We need to concentrate on the risks of tomorrow if we are to not only protect but enhance value for our organizations. We must start looking beyond the horizon to identify emerging risks.

This is segment one in a four-part series in which we will take a deep dive into the individuals suggested risk areas. In this session we will examine three areas of focus and some of the most impactful risks that Internal Audit should focus on during the new normal.
  • Heightened Focus on Organizational Resilience
  • Elevated Macro Environment Uncertainty
  • Humanization vs. Dehumanization of the Workforce

After reviewing these areas, we will then link them to “Hot Spot” topics as identified by the Gartner group that internal audit should be attuned to in 2021 and years forward. Within each segment, as we delve into the hot spot areas, we will discuss internal audit’s role and objectives as well as potential audit tests that should be considered when evaluating the particular hot spot.

This session begins by examining the three focus areas previously listed and then begins to delve into the first two Hot Topic areas of IT Governance and data governance. Lesson Objectives for session one include:
  • Examine the impact of COVID on Internal Audit Focus Areas
  • Understand the three key themes for internal audit focus
    • Heightened Focus on Organizational Resilience
    • Elevated Macro Environment Uncertainty
    • Humanization vs. Dehumanization of the Workforce
  • Evaluate and identify procedures for specific internal audit Hot Spots
    • IT Governance
    • Data Governance

The continuing series is outlined below.
Part Two: IA 2021 and Beyond Focus Areas
  • Cyber Vulnerabilities
  • Business Continuity Disaster Recovery
  • Talent Resilience
  • Corporate Social Responsibility

Part Three: IA 2021 and Beyond Focus Areas Part 3
  • Third-Party management
  • Supply Chain management
  • Data and Analytics

Part Four: 2021 IA Focus Areas 2021 and Beyond
  • Risk Management and Culture
  • Workforce Management
  • Corporate Financial Management

Field: Auditing
CPE: 1
Delivery Method: Self-Study
Format: Video

Your Instructor

Lynn Fountain
Lynn Fountain

Consultant, CPA, CGMA, CRMA, MBA, Past Chief Audit Executive

Business Consultant, Trainer, Author

Ms. Fountain has over 40 years of experience spanning public accounting, industry accounting and consulting. Sixteen years of that experience has been in the field of internal audit, risk managment and process improvement. She is well adept to assist your organization evaluate business strategy, perform risk assessments, establish a Sarbanes-Oxley process, synergizing internal audit processes or perform process improvement projects.

As a past corporate executive Lynn has a passion for working with professionals to enhance their processes and provide leading edge education. She has authored and delivered hundreds of training courses for accounting, finance and audit professionals. Her training is filled with not just theory but real world application.

Ms. Fountain has authored three technical publications:

-Leading the Internal Audit Function 

-Raise the Red Flag

-Ethics and the Internal Auditor's political dilemma

Lynn is a recognized leader in the internal audit profession as well as a recognized business professional.  

Ms. Fountain obtained her BSBA from Pittsburg State University and her MBA from Washburn University in Kansas. She has active, current CPA, CGMA, and CRMA credentials.

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