The Bulletin

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The Bulletin
Volume
7
Issue
12
12/2021
In prior years, there have been unique enterprise, process and technology risk issues and financial reporting issues for audit committees to consider in addition to the normal ongoing activities articulated within the committee’s charter. These exciting, unprecedented times continue to evolve the committee’s agenda. We discuss the agenda items for 2022 in this issue of The Bulletin and also offer questions for audit committees to consider when self-assessing their performance. In formulating these topics, we considered input from our interactions with client audit committees and insights from...
Volume
7
Issue
11
09/2021
Ransomware attacks have been around for many years. In the past, cyber-threat actors would penetrate a company’s computer and network systems and obtain data with the objective of returning it upon payment. The demanded payments were usually smaller than the ransoms requested in recent incidents. Most of these incidents weren’t financially material, nor were they reported publicly. By contrast, today’s ransomware perpetrators execute well-orchestrated attacks accompanied by more significant financial demands. These incidents don’t focus on simple “theft” of data; instead, their intent is to...
12/2020
How has the audit committee agenda changed? With 2020 almost in the rear view mirror (thankfully!), the 2021 audit committee agenda is shaping up differently than in years past. The past 12 months presented an opportunity for audit committees to support the key players managing the financial reporting process. Going forward, that support could prove to be critically important as the business environment continues to present disruptive challenges. Board members should not be surprised by anything 2021 has to offer. The key is ensuring the companies they serve are resilient and agile enough...
Volume
7
Issue
7
05/2020
Introduction   |   Chasing a Moving Target   |   A Fluid Current State   |   Focus on Leadership and Culture: Emphasising One Mission   |   Facilitate Employee Engagement: Making Symbiotic Times Possible   |   Apply Scenario Analysis: Planning for the Unexpected   |   Develop Your Ecosystem: Building a Community of Resources   |   Think Disruptive Innovation: Committing to What’s Possible and Practical   |   Summary For those who have read just about everything concerning coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) within their capacity and attention span to absorb, the lethal message is clear: This...
Volume
7
Issue
6
03/2020
For several years, Protiviti has described the “future auditor” as a chief audit executive (CAE) who takes definitive steps toward making The Institute of Internal Auditors’ vision of “an independent, objective assurance and consulting activity that adds value and improves an organisation’s operations” a reality. Several issues of The Bulletin have been devoted to describing various aspects of the future auditor’s journey.[1] The future is fast arriving with digital technologies unleashing a tsunami of opportunity and disruption that no one can ignore, particularly internal audit. As...
Volume
7
Issue
5
12/2019
The demands on boards of directors are as significant as they have ever been. Each committee of the board faces its own challenges, too, and the audit committee is no exception. With new accounting standards coming online, an increasingly active Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) inspections agenda, the relevance of the traditional accounting and reporting model under fire, and continued uncertainty in the geopolitical, business and regulatory environment, audit committees indeed have their hands full. As in prior years, we have identified several agenda items for audit...
Volume
7
Issue
5
12/2019
(Offered in Conjunction With Protiviti’s The Bulletin, “Setting the 2020 Audit Committee Agenda”[1]) When the audit committee undertakes an assessment of its composition, charter, agenda and focus, it may want to consider the following questions in light of the company’s industry, circumstances, risks, financial reporting issues and the current challenges it may be facing. These questions are intended to be illustrative and do not purport to cover every topic the committee should consider nor are they intended to apply to every single audit committee. They should be customised to the...
Volume
7
Issue
4
10/2019
What is the true purpose of the corporation? Does it exist principally to serve the interests of shareholders? Or is its purview more broadly to address the interests of other stakeholders affected by its activities? Should business performance focus solely on financial results and maximisation of profits? Or should it also focus on other dimensions, such as environmental and social impacts in addition to financial results — the so-called “triple bottom line”?  This debate has raged ad nauseam for decades. Largely framed by the economist Milton Friedman, the prevailing notion in the United...
Volume
7
Issue
3
05/2019
In the world of the chief audit executive (CAE), stakeholders are looking for deeper insights and value. It’s a world of rapid change on economic, geopolitical, technological, social and other fronts in which the organisation the CAE serves must adapt and grow or risk decline and its ultimate demise. As the risks companies face and the related audit universe change, the focus and skill sets needed by internal audit must evolve, too. But that change is not possible unless internal audit also innovates and transforms itself to keep pace with the velocity of advancements in the business. For...
Volume
7
Issue
2
04/2019
The Bulletin: Protiviti’s Review of Corporate Governance In a prior issue of The Bulletin, Protiviti discussed the evolution of sustainability; why reporting on environmental, social and governance (ESG) criteria is important; the obstacles to ESG initiatives; the ESG maturity continuum; what companies should be doing to tackle this topic; and examples of sustainability leaders.1 The premise underlying a corporate focus on sustainability is that corporate leadership is needed to enhance civilisation’s ability to address critical environmental, economic and social challenges and enable the...