The Audit Process
The audit process begins with an annual university-wide risk assessment. The assessment is used to identify high risk areas that will be considered for the audit plan. An annual audit plan is prepared to identify audit areas and is the beginning of the audit process. The plan is developed with input from various sources, including members of the Board of Trustees, administration and deans as well as the results of the risk assessment model. The model uses five business risks to produce a relative risk factor. Audits with the highest risk factor are given the highest priority when developing our audit plan. The resulting audit plan is approved by the university Board of Trustees Audit Committee and is distributed to university leadership. The plan will change as the university's risks evolve throughout the year.
Contact Department Management
Unless circumstances or the audit objectives necessitate a "surprise audit", all departments selected for an audit in the next fiscal year will be officially notified in writing of the tentative date of the audit to discuss the timing, scope, and objectives of the audit. An entrance conference is held with the appropriate department personnel to discuss the general objectives of the audit, as well as any pertinent information contained in the preliminary survey. Management is encouraged to discuss any aspect of their operations that they would like to include in the audit.
During fieldwork, auditors perform the actual audit of departmental procedures and controls. Interviews may be conducted with key staff and faculty to obtain an understanding of the department's operations from the employees' perspectives. Significant operational processes will also be identified and reviewed for efficiency and effectiveness during this process. Compliance testing of department records may be performed at this time. Audit Services makes every effort to consider your employees' workloads to avoid any conflicts with deadlines or "crunch times."
Communication During the Audit
Audit Services will provide frequent updates on the status of the audit and any potential issues. It is our goal to keep you well informed during the audit process.
Culminating the audit is an audit report, which includes the scope and objectives of the review, the significant issues identified, and your action plans addressing the issues. The report is first issued in draft form to departmental management only. An exit conference is then scheduled to discuss the report and to verify that it is factual and complete. You are given the opportunity to suggest revisions before the report is issued. The final report is distributed to the President, Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration and COO, departmental management, and other appropriate personnel. The Audit Committee of the Board of Trustees receives summaries of all reports issued during the year and any significant observations are discussed at the periodic meetings. Additional information about the audit report can be found at the following link.
Feedback to Us
Audit Services has developed an online customer satisfaction survey to be completed by an individual in your department who actively participated in the review. This survey, sent with the final report, is designed to assess the effectiveness of our review team and our performance in key areas such as scheduling, coverage, and reporting, and to help us improve our services to you. We welcome any comments that you may have, both positive and negative, regarding the review process.
Audit Services will follow-up on outstanding issues to ensure that the action plans have been implemented in a timely manner. This information is tracked through an electronic system called AuditBoard. This system allows management to manage the status of issue items and communicate this directly to Audit Services. Pending items are reported to university leadership twice per year as of 6/30 and 12/31.
To log into AuditBoard, please click on the link below.