During these unprecedented times, internal audit and risk management professionals need to reevaluate risks affecting their organization. Audit plans must be realigned and reprioritized to ensure internal audit plays a pivotal role in helping the business successfully navigate significant changes.
As risk management professionals, we need to serve as trusted advisors and assist with understanding and assessing challenges, while continuing to maintain independence and objectivity. Given that people, processes and technology are all changing, with many companies restructuring operations to allow employees to work from home, internal audit needs to completely understand the impact of those changes. Some of the business risks that need to be considered are:
Deteriorating economic conditions
Adaptation of company communication channels, collaboration provisions and oversight considerations to accommodate alternative work arrangements
Heightened reliance on estimates within business outlook and scenario analysis
Impact on customer engagement and interaction
Continued disruption; arising innovators
No prior history to govern situational decision-making
Loss of key employees
Crisis management and contingency plans
Volatility in customer demand and supply chain
Internal exposure to the pandemic
Product safety and liability considerations
Staging operational and safety measures commensurate with risk and changing regulations
Impact on workforce mobility and attendance
Process changes and pressures on efficiency and productivity
R&D and capital investments
Regional and/or international exposures
Vendor and third-party exposures
Liquidity and cash flow constraints
Going concern and impairment considerations
Stimulus package risk and opportunities
Tax positions, incentives and credits
Credit risk and payment deferrals and defaults
Forecasting and budgeting uncertainty
Control environment changes
COVID-19 disclosure matters
Elevated cyber exposure
Maintenance of existing systems
Delayed investments in new technology
Schneider Downs Risk Advisory Services consists of individuals with expertise in accounting, operations, information technology and cybersecurity who can assist your organization with enhancing or developing your risk register, as well as developing and executing audits. We provide consulting services to your organization on critical business matters and advise on strategies needed to address emerging risks and opportunities as we navigate the unique circumstances brought on by COVID-19.
You’ve heard our thoughts… We’d like to hear yours
The Schneider Downs Our Thoughts On blog exists to create a dialogue on issues that are important to organizations and individuals. While we enjoy sharing our ideas and insights, we’re especially interested in what you may have to say. If you have a question or a comment about this article – or any article from the Our Thoughts On blog – we hope you’ll share it with us. After all, a dialogue is an exchange of ideas, and we’d like to hear from you. Email us at [email protected].
Material discussed is meant for informational purposes only, and it is not to be construed as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please note that individual situations can vary. Therefore, this information should be relied upon when coordinated with individual professional advice.
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