New systems meltdown – the story of Mr Brown

Mr Brown awakes and rests on his elbow, scratching his bristled face. He can smell the stale coffee and cigarettes on his breath. One too many late nights having to catch up. The white cotton bed-sheets feel soft on his skin. He has to resist the urge to lie back down and close his eyes. […]

The dual role of internal audit

Internal Audit has an assurance role and partners with management and other parties to obtain assurance that the controls in place are working and that the business objectives are being met. This is one of the two main functions that modern Internal Audit performs, the role of assurance partner. The other function is that of […]

What is your business landscape?

When looking at any business or operational environment from an Internal Audit and Management point of view, the landscape must be clearly defined by policies and procedures as well as training manuals and standard operating procedures (SOPs).  This allows employees to know their function and how this relates to the overall product of the department […]

The right balance between interesting and interested

Is it better to be interesting or interested? Celebrities can get attention from being interesting and they make a lot of money from this. However the truly great are both interesting and also interested.  Have you ever been to a party and chatted to someone who was interested in you?  How did this make you […]

Observation is a key skill in auditing

Observation is one of the key skills that can be applied in any professional, occupation or relationship.  Proper observation has been known to save marriages.  There is such a thing called “obnosis”. This simply means to observe the obvious.  So much of what we see is see through the filters of our upbringing, education, religion […]

Reporting and review of Sustainability data – It is your responsibility

It is becoming more and more important for companies to start measuring their sustainability – in particular their environmental data as relates to a company’s carbon footprint.  Carbon tax is on the way and you need to have a robust reporting system to show completeness, accuracy and validity of the reporting behind carbon emissions (CO2e). Sustainability […]

Can you trust your employees

Can you trust your employees?  Do you have controls and monitoring systems in place to detect fraud or any transgressions or non-optimal performance within your company? Are you monitoring revenue and costs? If the answer is “No” to any of these questions then you are haemorrhaging cash.  This is a fact.  Without monitoring systems there […]

The link between understanding business processes and staff competence

There is a distinct connection between understanding business processes, controls and competence.  If your employees and management do not understand your business and the reason for certain processes and controls then they cannot take ownership of the processes and will not be responsible for what goes wrong.  Understanding comes with knowing the purpose of things […]

The analogy of the car

I like to use the analogy of a car when talking about running a business.  Cars are very near and dear to most of us and can become an extension of who we are.  The same applies for your business, even if it is an organisation you work for, this becomes who you are.  We […]