Audit – adversary or partner

Auditor as a monster

Audit, be it financial, ISO, FDA, SOX or any other, creates tangible nervosity in any organization. The auditor is viewed as an adversary or at least a policeman. This feeling is obvious when the processes are not transparent, control is done only at fixed stages and number of variations is unclear. Auditors will check accuracy of the numbers and the processes from unpredictable angles, which is definitely dreadful.

But should it always be like that? Are there ways to turn the audit into identifying improvement opportunities and points for more effective management?

Audit from the big ones

We have interviewed audit department leads of the big 4 and discovered that their service today is limited to the request of the customer. The customer asks an audit company to check a specific process, identified by the customer as a higher risk. Such audit is a one time exercise. The next year it will be another process. This way the responsibility on process selection is placed on the shoulders of the customer and the audit company takes no risks.

Disadvantages of the conventional approach

Issues of mentioned above approach are obvious:

1. Customers must point out where their risks lay, instead of getting professional diagnosis from the specialists

2. Only one specific process is audited each time, leaving all the rest of the processes to the prayers and crossing fingers

3. Already audited process is believed to be checked for the following years

New technologies – higher professionalism

Imagine now that there is a tool, that captures all business processes, running in the company. It makes them transparent in an online mode. All of them!

Then auditors don’t need to ask the client about the pain points. They can first review all what is going on and propose processes for a detailed review. They can also go into details without wasting time of the customer and creating pressure on already overloaded process owners. The advice is going to be much more professional and efficient.

The same is applicable to the customer. Instead of being terrified about the auditors, they can see their processes upfront, identify the areas, where more abnormalities or inconsistencies occur and clean the mess before any external body looks into their business.

The new technology name

Yes, although it might be hard to believe, the described new technology already exists. We call it BANYAS – Automated Business Scenario Identifier. It does exactly what was stated above: identifies, documents and analyses actually happening business processes of the company. No preliminary knowledge or directions from the customer. It runs and builds the process map. The auditor and the business will be able to focus on the subjects where the added value is: improving, standardizing, fixing and optimizing.

With BANYAS the auditor will finally turn into a partner, who helps to see where the improvement is of the highest value.