Collaboration of Internal and External Auditors

Workshop: October 9 – 11, 2018ILjubljana, SloveniaIAuditing

This workshop provided a platform for the exchange of ideas on how to increase cooperation between external auditors working in SAI and public sector internal auditors. The participants got insights into the benefits of stronger cooperation and coordination, guidance on cooperation modalities and practices, and focused on the applicable IPPF and ISSAI standards. It brought together managers of central harmonization units, heads of internal audit departments, senior internal auditors, and senior SAI auditors.

About this learning event

This workshop provided a platform for exchange of ideas on how to increase cooperation between external auditors working in SAI and public sector internal auditors. The workshop brought together managers of central harmonization units, heads of internal audit departments, senior internal auditors, and senior SAI auditors.

What have you learned

According to Three Lines of Defence Model, internal audit plays role of the third line which means it provides assurance to senior management and governing board on effectiveness of risk management, control and governance process. External audit is not part of the model, it is placed outside of organization and it has a primary role to express opinion on the financial statements. Collaboration between internal and external auditors is however beneficial as it gives management a better and more comprehensive overview of risks and even though objectives of internal and external audit is different, there are areas of common interest, particularly in financial reporting.

This comprehensive and practical three-day learning initiative discussed areas and opportunities for cooperation between the two forms of audit. Participants discussed role and responsibilities of both forms, clarify basis for cooperation and identify possible ways of cooperation. Part of learning event also focused on promotion of auditor’s role. The workshop relied on applicable standards.

How have you benefited

The course used an interactive approach. It was guided by practitioners, which used examples and case studies from practice.

By the end of the learning initiative participants had:

  • Developed a better understanding of principles, standards and guidelines that guide the work of internal and external auditors
  • Developed a better understanding of what is the basis for cooperation between internal and external auditors
  • Identified areas for cooperation

Who attended

This learning initiative was designed for managers of central harmonization units, heads of internal audit departments, senior internal auditors, and senior SAI auditors. The course was highly interactive and participants were encouraged to share their views and professional experiences.

Faculty

Joop Vrolijk, Independent Expert

Joop Vrolijk has a solid background in Economics and public audit combining post-graduate degrees in Economics, External Auditing (CPA) and in Governmental Auditing and more than 20 years audit and management experience in the Netherlands Court of Audit. On behalf of the OECD/SIGMA he worked for 12 years on implementing projects on PFM reform strategy, Public Internal Financial Control (Financial Management and Control, Internal Audit, and Central Harmonisation) and Financial Inspection, and building capacity of Supreme Audit Institutions in EU candidate countries such as Albania, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, FYROM and Serbia. He has also a strong experience working in former CIS countries. For more than six years he worked in Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine in both areas: Public Finance Management and Supreme Audit Institutions.

In the Netherlands Court of Audit he was engaged in numerous international projects to review and build SAI capacity such as the project manager of a bilateral support project with the Indonesian and Bulgarian SAI. In addition, on behalf of the Netherlands Court of Audit he was a member of the INTOSAI working group for Internal Control.

After his retirement in 2015 he worked as a freelance consultant on several PIFC projects in Albania (Certification of Internal Audit), Georgia (Implementation of Financial Management and Control), Moldova (analysing progress in PIFC), Serbia (reporting on PIFC), Ukraine (Development PIFC) and carried out a  Performance Measurement Framework assessment of the Suriname SAI.

Tina Toman Pfajfar,  Insurance Supervision Agency, Slovenia

Tina Toman Pfajfar is Deputy Director and also the Head of the On Site Inspection Section at the Insurance Supervision Agency. In the past she was the Director of Internal Audit Service at the Slovenian KD Life Insurance Company. She also worked for the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Slovenia where she held a position of the Head of Internal Audit Service. Her main responsibilities included risk-based internal auditing, providing assurance to the Minister (or Board) about the risk management and internal control system, preparing a Manual for the Internal Audit Service, PIFC, and others.

She is the president of the Internal Audit Committee at the Slovenian Institute of Auditors and vice president of the Slovenian Chapter of the IIA – Institute of the Internal Auditors. She is Certified Internal Auditor at the Slovenian Institute of Auditors, State Internal Auditor at the Ministry of Finance, State Auditor at the Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia and she has a Certification in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA) at The Institute of Internal Auditors.

Danijela Stepić, Director of CHU, Ministry of Finance, Croatia

Ms. Danijela Stepić holds a BSc and a MSc from the Faculty of Business and Economics at the University of Zagreb.

She started a career at the Ministry of Defence, in Finance and Budget Directorate, where she also assisted in the preparation of a introducing for an internal audit function. She joined the Ministry of Finance and became Director of the Central Harmonisation Unit in 2008. She was responsible for the introduction and implementation of PIFC reforms in Croatia in line with requirements under Chapter 32. Between 2013 and 2015 she took an unpaid leave and worked in international projects in the region. As an expert she worked in Kosovo, Serbia, and Bosnia and Hercegovina, providing technical assistance on various aspects of PIFC implementation, including financial management and control, internal audit and central harmonization unit. Since January 2016, she has returned to the Central Harmonization Unit as the Director. 

Danijela holds an International Certificate and Diploma in Public Sector Accounting and Auditing from CIPFA, and also worked as CIPFA/CEF tutor.

Recently she also co-authored the book »Fiscal Accountability and Financial Management – Guide for the Heads of Budget Organisations«.

Jorg Kristijan Petrovič, First Deputy President of the Court of Audit, Slovenia

Jorg Kristijan Petrovič holds a BSc and MSc from the Faculty of Economics of the University of Ljubljana. He started his career at the Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia in 1996 as an Assistant Auditor. In 2004 he was appointed Supreme State Auditor of the Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia, taking over the Department for local self-government auditing. He held his office until 2006 when he was appointed Supreme State Auditor of the Court of Audit at the Department for auditing state budget, political parties as well as election and referendum campaigns.

He also gained his knowledge and expertise abroad (at the Supreme Audit Institutions of the United Kingdom and Germany) and was a member of various expert working groups (at the Association of Municipalities and Towns of Slovenia, Court of Audit and other expert bodies).

In 2013, Petrovič, was elected First Deputy President of the Court of Audit of the Republic of Slovenia for a term of nine years.

Dušan Sterle, Director, Budget Supervision Office (UNP), Slovenia

Dušan Sterle holds a BSc from the Faculty of Business and Economics of the University of Maribor. He also obtained his knowledge in the field of management of non-governmental organisations at the Institute of Policy Studies at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, USA.

He is a public official with more than 15 years of experience in local, national and international public administration in the field of finances, policy development and international cooperation. He has substantial experience of more than eight years in private and non-governmental sector in the field of budgeting, management consultancy, HR development and project management.

From 2007 to 2015, he was employed at the European Commission, working for the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) as a Policy Coordinator and International Relations Officer, involved in promotion and development of financial control mechanisms and anti-fraud policy activities to protect the financial interests of the EU, fight against fraud and corruption. He was responsible for the Office's relations and activities with the EU Member States' and Western Balkan countries’ competent authorities.

Previously, he worked as a State Internal Auditor at the Slovenian Ministry of Finance, Budget Supervision Office. He contributed to development of public internal financial control system (PIFC), certifying of state internal auditors, coordination of anti-fraud activities with relevant national authorities to protect financial interests of the EU, and facilitating cooperation between Slovenian authorities and relevant European Commission’s General Directorates.

In private sector, as a management consultant and trainer, he spent five years helping private companies and public organisations to restructure their businesses, organisation and develop their potential with regard to human resources, quality, efficiency and effectiveness.

In 2017, he was appointed by the Government of the Republic of Slovenia as a Director of the Budget Supervision Office.

Anja Bajcar, Internal Auditor, Budget Supervision Office (UNP), Slovenia

Anja Bajcar holds BSc in Economics from the Faculty of Economics of the University of Ljubljana. She has been working in the Budget Supervision Office – Central Harmonization Unit for more than 10 years. Her current work focuses on: preparing proposals for state internal audit methodology and standards on the basis of international recognized standards, performing compliance assessments of public sector organizations' internal audit with legal/regulatory requirements and launching the project e-Internal Audit whose aim is to provide uniform IT support to all state internal audit services and external service providers.

Before joining the Budget Supervision Office she worked as an internal auditor in the Office of the President of the Republic of Slovenia.

She is a member of the Board of Governors of the Slovenian Chapter of the IIA – Institute of the Internal Auditors. She is State Internal Auditor at the Ministry of Finance and Certified Internal Auditor at the Slovenian Institute of Auditors.

Partners

This learning initiative was supported by:

Slovenia's Development Cooperation