President Message - February 2014
2020: The Future Belongs To Us
2020 is used as a milestone by countries and organisations to set a vision and measure progress. The Singapore accountancy sector aims to transform into the leading global hub for Asia-Pacific by 2020; and where we are concerned - to develop into a Centre of Excellence in Internal Audit, a platform for leading professional development and certification that will attract professionals from the region. As the profession’s standard-setter and chief advocate, IIA Singapore is working closely with the Singapore Accountancy Commission (SAC) to achieve this vision. 2020 may seem far away, but in reality there are only six years to go. We welcome members’ inputs on how we can further raise the bar for the profession.
Leading to 2020, how will the expectations of our stakeholders evolve? During one of our recent events, a member wryly reminisced to me that at the start of her IA career in the 1980s, the function required traditional financial and operational assurance skills. Almost two decades later, her role has inevitably blossomed to include a rainbow of skill sets which include strong business acumen, relationship management and change management. Acknowledging this, I could not help but imagine the possibilities which could surface in the next six years. Will more and more countries, including Singapore, make IA a necessary function? Will IA’s voice and “seat at the table” be secured, maintained and strengthened? What will make up the DNA of a “high-performing” IA team in year 2020?
2020 will naturally be the year we gauge where IA stands in the Asia-Pacific region as Singapore moves steadily towards its quest to be a global accountancy hub and a Centre of Excellence in Internal Audit. Some risks which could derail the profession's resolute march towards this vision - for example: not meeting stakeholder expectations, lagging behind other assurance functions, and failure to focus on high-risk areas which can lead to corporate failure and the oft-repeated question, “Where were the Internal Auditors?” It is important that we manage these risks well, so that when 2020 comes round, the internal audit profession as a whole can acknowledge with confidence that they are well-positioned to serve their stakeholders.
I wish you all a Blessed Lunar New Year,
President Message - January 2014
Looking Back, Looking Ahead, Looking Beyond
As IIA Singapore enters its 38th year, looking back at the past years brings fond memories of IIAS’ achievements. The IIA is the international standard-setter for Internal Auditors and there are now more than 115,000 Certified Internal Auditors (CIA) around the world. The IIA's other certifications, CRMA, CCSA, CFSA and CGAP are also enjoying steady growth.
Looking ahead, the profession is inevitably heading for change and our perennial role of providing independent and objective assurance will remain, while the expectations of Internal Audit continue to increase with evolving regulations, stakeholder demands and technological progress.
After having been in the profession for many years, I would like to humbly share my thoughts for success in this profession:
First, expand your horizon and look beyond your space if you aspire to be successful. Understand business risks, reach out, invest time with business units, and partner with them to bring success.
Second, technology will drive efficiency and shape the future of how audits are planned and executed. The next few years will see increasing use of data analytics. Keeping abreast with technology will ensure you stay relevant with changing times.
Third, Combined Assurance will be embraced by organisations of the future, drawing assurance from various providers. Assurance providers such as IA, compliance and risk management will rely on each other and cease to work in silos in order to provide assurance and protect the interests of the organisation. IA is in the best position to champion and coordinate this effort.
I wish you all a rewarding and colourful new year of success in the profession.
"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." – George Bernard Shaw
THE 21ST CENTURY INTERNAL AUDITOR
An IIA Singapore and Robert Half Video Collaboration
Driven by accelerating change, the role of the 21st Century Internal Auditor has evolved. The ingredients that lead to success involve a skilful blend of effective relationship-building and integrity with technical competence, among other key attributes.
The Institute of Internal Auditors Singapore and Robert Half spoke recently with four industry professionals for their local insights on how the role has evolved and what it takes to be a 21st Century Internal Auditor.
The Evolving Role of The Internal Auditor
In the wake of rapid globalisation and regulatory changes over the past decade, the role of Internal Audit has evolved to maintain its relevance. Globally, relationship--building and integrity are being strongly identified as most-wanted attributes in the 21st Century Internal Auditor. Technical skills alone will no longer suffice.
To attract and groom the next generation of internal auditors with creative-thinking and communication skills, career development & progression, recognition and rewards need to be addressed holistically.
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Attributes of The 21st Century Internal Auditor
Acquiring effective soft skills are essential for all successful Internal Auditors. The 21st Century Internal Auditor has to be seen as an effective communicator, creative-thinker and problem-solver. As most organisations today increasingly use social media widely for its businesses, internal auditors should leverage this great tool for their work.
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