The Chartered Institute of Internal Auditors’ flagship conference will return on the 10th and 11th October, for two days of talks, discussions, interactive learning and networking opportunities. With more than 400 industry members due to gather to debate the key issues facing internal auditing, while gaining fresh insight from business leaders and industry experts, former Business Secretary Vince Cable, who recently became the leader of the Liberal Democrats, will deliver this year’s opening keynote address.
Following this, eight seminar streams will cover key topics such as cyber and digital, auditing change, delivering high performance, and fraud and financial crime. The programme is supported by ten advisors working within the professional services sector.
In Stream A, which is dedicated to Risk, Deloitte Risk Advisory Partner Tim Archer will be speaking on the matter of “Risk appetite – is your exposure where you want it?” The latest generation of technological innovations has created a major opportunity, as well as risks, for business model disruption across multiple industries, with auditing firms being no different.
Stream B, Digital and cyber, meanwhile sees two representatives from the professional services world. Mark Peters, Managing Director at Protiviti, will deliver a message on “Catching the digital wave of change”, while senior cyber security consultant at Sophos, James Burchell, will speak on “Cyber security – SOS.” In the wake of a number of high-profile hacks both inside and outside the auditing and professional services world, spanning Big Four firm Deloitte’s email server to the systems of the NHS, cybersecurity has become a key issue across all industries, but with the confidential information auditing firms have access to, this is of particular interest to the sector.
Stream C will address Strategic internal audit, and will likewise see two professional services employees take the platform. Mark Stock, a Partner in Risk Assurances at PwC, will consider “Meeting stakeholder expectations – strategies for responding to the challenges”, while Alison Diana, of APD consulting and coaching, will speak on “Building better audit client relationships.” Assessing Governance in Stream D, Paul Marshall, a Senior adviser with EY, specialising in internal audit and corporate governance, financial services risk advisory, will address “Auditing governance at board level”.
Stream E, addressing Financial services, will see Ian Gardner, a Partner in governance, risk and assurance at Moore Stephens, speak on “The Senior Management Regime – the impact on internal audit and audit committees”, while, relatedly, Stream F on Fraud and financial crime will see Brendan Weekes, Senior Manager in forensics at Smith & Williamson, discuss “Conducting effective internal investigations.” A number of major firms have recently been stung for their auditing practices, including PwC, who were fined £5 million for misconduct in their work with the professional services group Connaught – who went bankrupt in 2011. Also speaking in Stream F, meanwhile, Nicola Cobb, Director in Risk Consulting at KPMG sees the Big Four presence at the event completed, presenting a seminar on “Preventing procurement and supply chain fraud.”
Finally, Stream H will see Chief Executive of Mentor Europe, David Hilliard, host a discussion on “Successful change – the human dimension”. Human resources solutions are at the heart of a number of questions regarding change in the workplace, including automation, and the implementation of AI across all industries, including auditing. While studies have indicated only 5% of work could be entirely replaced by machinery in the next few decades, a sizable 60% chunk of work activities could be mechanised by 2055 – leading to significant workplace change in many office environments, not just low-skill industries.