Agenda item

Internal Audit Charter

To consider the report of the Audit Manager.


The Audit Manager (HK) presented the Internal Audit Charter which defined the scope of internal audit, its purpose and responsibility.  The Charter was required to be reviewed and updated every two years or following a change in the service. There had been few changes to the service objectives since the Audit Charter was last approved by Members in September 2021. A Member welcomed the helpful change history information as part of the documentation.


The Audit Manager responded to the following Members’ questions:-


·      the comment made in relation to the objectives set out in the Charter document that there be a specific reference to the Audit and Governance Committee rather than just the Council was noted.

·      reporting to the Audit and Governance Committee was made either where a service had not agreed a remedial action or it had not been actioned or implemented. In such cases, Members had the right ask the Manager of that service to attend any of the Committee meetings to explain their action.

·      in responding to an enquiry about there being no mechanism for representations to be made by the service, any instances of non-compliance by management on remedial action were rare. A review of the format of the progress reports for any Audit undertaken, would now include an Executive summary to show the detail of any findings and any actions. The Director Finance stated that the Executive summary would provide a snapshot with a rating for each audit. He suggested that following publication of the agenda, Members could request further information on an audit in advance of the meeting. In addition, the Audit Managers would continue to highlight any issues with the reports.

·      the Audit team had access to the centralised computer system used by staff working from home, and access to individual staff members’ homes was not required. The printing and retention of printed material whilst working from home was not encouraged. The Director Finance advised that standard wording was taken from a centrally produced Internal Audit guidance which was quite dated and this would be reviewed.

·      the suggestion of a notification being sent to Audit and Governance Members when an audit has been completed was noted.

·      a reference to the wording ‘any embarrassment caused to the Council’ in paragraph 12.1 would be reviewed.

·      in terms of the risk methodology, the team undertook an annual risk assessment as part of the Audit Plan, in accordance with the Council’s risk management process, to determine where their resources were placed for the coming year and consider factors such as finance, the complexity of the IT system used, and their own experience and knowledge of the system.  The Audit team had all undertaken carbon literacy training and were committed within their work to help the Council meet the net zero target. Part of the preparations for a service audit included completion of a pre audit questionnaire and this included a section on the service policy approach to carbon emissions. The Audit team would continue to work with the Net Zero team to consider how this would be reported back to Members.


The Audit Manager would speak to her colleague and discuss incorporating Member’s suggestions in the Charter.


RESOLVED that the Audit and Governance Committee approved the updated Internal Audit Charter.


Supporting documents: