2019 IT Audit Benchmarking Study

2019 IT Audit Benchmarking Study
2019 IT Audit Benchmarking Study

Today’s Toughest Challenges in IT Audit: Tech Partnerships, Talent, Transformation

Assessing the International Leaders in an Annual ISACA-Protiviti Survey

“Organizations worldwide are focused on transformation. Some, in fact, can find themselves in a determined rush to automate, become more digital and bring in the latest advanced technologies. It is in these instances where IT audit can deliver value by providing a clear point of view on the underlying processes strategic technology projects are serving, and partnering effectively with the IT organization to ensure these projects achieve their objectives not only in terms of performance, but also in terms of appropriate controls, such as security and privacy. But in the process, IT audit must have an agile, ‘next-gen’ mindset and approach.”

Andrew Struthers-Kennedy, Managing Director — Global Leader, IT Audit, Protiviti


Cybersecurity. Privacy. Data management and governance. Building effective partnerships with the IT organization. Dealing with ongoing digital transformation and disruption. Addressing resource and talent challenges.

In assessing findings from the 2019 Global IT Audit Benchmarking Study, conducted by ISACA and Protiviti, it is clear these are among the top issues IT audit leaders and professionals are addressing as they seek to understand, support and advance business growth and innovation in their organizations.

Specifically, from an IT audit perspective, we see a strong partnership between the IT organization and IT audit function as delivering significant advantages in numerous areas of IT audit processes and practices. We see IT security and privacy as the standout top technology challenge organizations face today. We see data management and governance emerging as a critical challenge, one that has become more significant compared to prior years of our study. We see digital transformation continuing to impact a broad range of areas for IT auditors. And amid these many changes and challenges, we see IT audit functions continuing to grapple with resource, staffing and skills needs, especially as these needs evolve.

In our report, we present the results of our global research and offer commentary on these and other notable issues. We also provide high-level recommendations for IT audit and senior business leaders. And as always, we provide a detailed breakdown of our benchmarking data by organization size, region and more.

We are confident this information will be an asset to IT audit leaders and professionals as they assess their own functions in the organization, identify gaps in their capabilities, move to focus on areas beyond check-the-box compliance exercises, strengthen their partnerships with IT as well as executives and board members, and ensure they are delivering value for the organization.

Finally, we extend our thanks to the more than 2,200 IT audit leaders and professionals worldwide who participated in our study, enabling us to offer the detailed benchmarking data and insights contained in our report.

“It’s essential to measure the key challenges that the IT audit community faces — including those related to diversity, skills, budgets, emerging technologies and regulatory compliance. By gaining a more nuanced understanding of these evolving challenges, we can drive meaningful progress in the profession and help audit professionals and enterprises prepare for and better navigate the evolving technology landscape.”


​​​Top Technology Challenges

  1. IT security and privacy/cybersecurity
  2. Data management and governance
  3. Emerging technology and infrastructure changes — transformation, innovation, disruption
  4. Resource/staffing/skills challenges
  5. Third-party/vendor management
  6. Regulatory compliance
  7. Cloud computing/virtualization
  8. Project management and change management
  9. Budgets and controlling costs
  10. Bridging IT and the business





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Andrew Struthers-Kennedy
Andrew Struthers-Kennedy
Managing Director
+1 410-454-6879
Brian Christensen
Brian Christensen
EVP, Managed Solutions & Enterprise Collaboration