Check out my post from the IT Revolution's blog, which explains why Beyond Agile Auditing isn't just for auditors. It's for both auditors and audit clients.
Scroll through my list of LinkedIn connections or the subscribers to my blog, and you’ll notice a fairly even mix of auditors and audit clients. Actually, there are a few more audit clients than auditors. That’s why Beyond Agile Auditing isn’t just for auditors. It’s for both auditors and audit clients.
As an audit client, what can you do to influence a better audit experience? Plenty!
Here are two examples of simple actions you can take to directly drive a better audit experience:
- Share your knowledge and experience with improved ways of working (like Lean, Agile, and DevOps) with your auditor friends.
- Encourage your teams to collaborate more closely with your auditors.
Let’s explore each of these in more detail.
Share Your Knowledge and Experience
Many organizations and teams within organizations have found ways to keep up with the increased pace of change we’re all operating in today. Technology teams specifically have been on the journey to better ways of working for quite some time now, and you’ve learned a LOT along the way.
It’s often said that the path to true mastery comes when you can teach a skill to others, right? Why not teach your auditors what you’ve learned and help them find ways to reap the benefits of these better ways of working? Not only will it help you and your team solidify your mastery of those skills, but it will also improve your relationship with your auditors and improve your audit experience.
Does your team run effective stand-ups? Great! Teach your auditors how. Have them join your team’s stand-ups during your next audit.
When you do this, you’ll accomplish two things. First, you’ll get updates on the auditors’ progress sooner and more frequently. You’ll also learn about potential roadblocks sooner (which enables you to remove them sooner and finish the audit sooner). Second, you’ll avoid having additional meetings added to your calendar. By integrating the auditors into your existing stand-ups or other meetings you regularly hold, you’re creating less disruption for your own team, so they can continue to focus on their own daily work.
Do you use a task board to create visibility for your work? Excellent! Show your auditors how they might make their own work visible. Better yet, show them how to incorporate audit work into your task board and backlog refinement process, turning audit work into planned work for you and your teams. This creates additional transparency into the auditors’ work and the impact on your team. This also enables solutions earlier and reduces the amount of unplanned work for your team.
Collaborate More Closely with Your Auditors
Your investment in greater collaboration will pay dividends in the form of more value-added, efficient audit work that will better position your team for success.
Let’s look at a scenario I’m sure you can relate to. Have you ever received a request from your auditors asking for various evidence and documentation they need to conduct their audit work? And after you work to gather all that evidence and documentation (which inevitably takes quite a bit of time, pulling you away from your actual work) and send it to your auditors, they come back and tell you you didn’t provide what they needed?
I’d wager that when you’ve experienced that, you’re more than just a bit frustrated, and that’s completely understandable. While some of you may think this is just how the audit game has to be played, I’m happy to share that it isn’t. It doesn’t have to be this way.
What if, instead, you worked with your auditors as they developed the scope of their audit and determined how to test the specific controls within the scope of the audit? What if you had a deeper understanding of what they were trying to accomplish? You’d be better positioned to help them understand exactly what evidence they need. And it would be much clearer to both you and your auditors what the documentation looks like, so there’s much less chance for confusion (for everyone involved) and a greater chance that what you provide the auditors will satisfy their requests without having to go back and forth multiple times. This isn’t just a hypothetical situation. This is reality for auditors and audit clients who work together and collaborate closely during an audit.
Now imagine how much better your audit experience will be when you not only collaborate more closely in the early part of the audit when the auditors are pulling together their request list but also when you apply that collaboration throughout the audit!
You’ve got the power and knowledge to create a better audit experience. What are you waiting for?
These are just two examples of actions you can take right away to influence a better audit experience. There are so many more waiting for you inside Beyond Agile Auditing. The book contains more insights for audit clients, including ways to directly improve the audit experience, as well as ways to help their auditors on their own journey to improved audit practices. Order your copy today!