You hired a top-notch facilitator, you spent hours wordsmithing your mission statement, and you carefully set goals you believe are strong yet achievable; but, you’re making a big mistake in your corporate strategic plan! It may not be your fault. Perhaps you don’t know or you just don’t have the resources. Whitley Penn is the largest public accounting firm with Texas only based offices, so let me explain it in a way that I know will make sense to our readership…with football metaphors.
My husband is a diehard New Orleans Saints fan and something they have been missing for years, sorry honey, is a defense. And anyone who knows enough football jargon to survive our Monday morning department meeting during football season knows, defenses win championships. I hate to break it to you, but your strategic plan is like the Saints. It doesn’t matter if you have the top scoring offense (read: strategic plan) in the League. Without a stout D-line, 6’5” edge rushers, pro-bowl caliber linebackers, shutdown corners and the Honey Badger, you’re doomed to the same fate as the Saint’s. So, the real question is, who is going to be your Legion of Boom? And the answer is: Internal Audit.
Internal Audit departments that function at the most mature level are linking their annual audit plan to the company’s strategic plan. To do this, the company must first have a clear vision of where it’s going. You knew there was a reason you hired that top-notch facilitator! Once the company has defined its goals and objectives, the internal audit department can put their risk management hats on and help to identify the “what could go wrong” items. Each risk is weighted according to impact and likelihood and the highest risks make it to the final audit plan (think Training Camp). You’re on your way to that championship ring now!
Here is an example of what a highly functioning internal audit program might look like:
So, this summer while you’re daydreaming about how your team’s first round draft pick is going to lead you to the ”Promised Land”, take a moment to consider whether you are doing enough to defend your corporate strategic plan. For more information on how Whitley Penn can assist you in establishing a best-in-class internal audit function or to share your prediction on whether it will be another long football season at the Brandt home, please contact me.
Whitley Penn continues to be one of the region’s most distinguished public accounting firms. With a strong base in Texas and a worldwide network affiliation via Nexia International, the firm is strategically positioned for continued growth both locally and internationally. Whitley Penn has been consistently recognized as “One the Top 100 Firms in the U.S.” and “Best of the Best” by INSIDE Public Accounting. For more information on Whitley Penn, please visit whitleypenn.com.