For the 6th year running, IIA Singapore together with the Accountant-General’s Department, Civil Service College and Singapore Accountancy Commission, welcomed more than 250 delegates for the Public Sector Internal Audit (PSIA) Conference 2018. Themed “Internal Audit: Adding Value in Public Sector Transformation”, in her opening address, Guest-of-Honour, Ms Jessica Tan, Chairman of Public Accounts Committee spoke about the need for the public sector to transform as Singapore aspires to become a Smart Nation. On the role Internal Audit plays in this transformation process, she said, “Internal audit can play a key role in helping to define the environment and business practices to allow for public officers to innovate and to have the agility to respond to changes. In this way, Public Sector Internal Auditors will help the agencies be agile, innovate and enable the transformation while maintaining trust.”
In her closing remarks, Chairperson of PSIA Conference 2018 and Governor of IIA Singapore, Ms Tan Suan Ee shared these learning points:
Government agencies are transforming to become even more digital and data driven. Rapid advancements in technology are changing internal processes and service delivery to citizens and businesses. The speed of change and proliferation of data are creating new opportunities for Internal Audit to add valuable insights. Internal Audit must transform to keep pace with stakeholders so that its work aligns with the strategies, objectives and risks of the organisation.
A) Internal Audit must be agile and proactive
The only way to successfully navigate change and manage disruption is by changing our mindset and becoming agile. This requires refocusing on new risks and opportunities, engaging subject matter experts and collaborating with business units who are implementing disruptive technologies to put together robust systems and services to serve citizens and businesses.
B) Internal Audit must pursue innovation
This requires challenging the status quo and questioning the ways assurance and advisory services are delivered. Supercharge Internal Audit by adopting new technologies (robotic process automation, machine learning) to increase the speed and accuracy of audit processes and move towards continuous auditing. Make better use of data to draw insights to improve effectiveness and efficiency of government services and drive governance.
C) Internal Audit needs to be insightful
Internal Audit can be positioned to provide insight into the operational, financial, compliance and reputational risks brought about by business transformation. By continuing to evaluate risk management, controls and governance practices, Internal Audit helps ensure that systems and processes are designed and operating effectively to support our organisations in the next phase of the digital revolution.
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