Internal auditors are primarily involved in completing operational and compliance audits, although some perform financial audits of segments of their companies.
Internal Auditors' roles include monitoring, assessing, and analyzing organizational risk and controls; and reviewing and confirming information and compliance with policies, procedures, and laws. Working in partnership with management, internal auditors provide the board, the audit committee, and executive management assurance that risks are mitigated and that the organization's corporate governance is strong and effective. And, when there is room for improvement, internal auditors make recommendations for enhancing processes, policies, and procedures."
Internal auditors have the responsibility of making sure that their company's financial records are in order. They evaluate the controls that govern the company's income and expense accounts to make certain they are sufficient. These accounts must meet company and government requirements. Company requirements are based on company policy; government requirements are drawn out through various laws and procedures. Internal auditors must assure that the controls are sufficient to eliminate error or fraud. They prepare the company's tax records for the government. Dealing with overall budgets, internal auditors have also become computer savvy with a handle over the various computer software packages that aid in organizing and reporting accounts. Internal auditors generally have no responsibilities for producing strategy based on accounts or company projections. Internal auditors in the United States become Certified Internal Auditors by passing the Institute of Internal Auditors four-part examination. The examination is based on such topics as risk and control, governance concepts, fraud elements, tools for audit engagement, financial accounting, information technology concepts, and competitive analysis and strategies. After passing the test, the internal auditor must decide in which one of four areas he or she would like to receive a certificate. One can qualify for the Certified Internal Auditor certificate; the Certified Government Auditing Professional certificate; the Certified Financial Services Auditor certificate or receive Certification in Control Self-Assessment. The IIA expects internal auditors to have bachelor degrees and to follow the IIA Code of Ethics. The IIA standards are promoted and recognized across the globe, and many international internal auditors obtain their certification to practice in their countries from the IIT. Internal auditors have a medium salary of $54,000. After experience, the upper levels of internal auditors command $94,100. The number of jobs is expected to increase by 22 percent through 2014. By obtaining an MBA in accounting, internal auditors can reach a much higher salary level. The MBA degree will give the auditor necessary skills to interpret and adapt new laws to their work. Internal auditors have privileged status positions. It is important that they have a good knowledge of the law to protect their access to and knowledge of sensitive and confidential information.
Internal & External auditors has difference in scope of their work and that's why different independence levels are expected from both of them as external auditors are the auditors who has to provide their independent opinion regarding the financial statements of any company, they are required to display independence from the management of company while giving opinion about fair activities. On the other hand internal auditors are the auditors who are appointed by the top management of the company to prepare and implement the risk assessment measures and to keep an independent eye on the overall operations of company that's why they are independent from operations of company and directly reportable to top management of company like shareholders auditor board etc so in this sense they are also somewhat independent from company as well.
All of the following requirements about internal controls were enacted under the Sarbanes- Oxley Act except; independent outside auditors must attest to the level of internal control. independent outside auditors must eliminate redundant internal controls. companies must develop sound internal controls over financial reporting. companies must continually assess the functionality of internal controls.
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