Your firm is the newly appointed external auditor to a large company that
sells, maintains and leases office equipment and furniture to its customers
and you have been asked to co-operate with internal audit to keep total
audit costs down. The company wants the external auditors to rely on
some of the work already performed by internal audit.
The internal auditors provide the following services to the company:
(i) A cyclical audit of the operation of internal controls in the company’s
major functions (operations, finance, customer support and
(ii) A review of the structure of internal controls in each major function
every four years;
(iii) An annual review of the effectiveness of measures put in place by
management to minimise the major risks facing the company.
During the current year, the company has gone through a major internal
restructuring in its information services function and the internal auditors
have been closely involved in the preparation of plans for restructuring,
and in the related post-implementation review.
a) Explain the extent to which your firm will seek to rely on the work of
the internal auditors in each of the areas noted above.
b) Describe the information your firm will seek from the internal auditors
in order for you to determine the extent of your reliance.
c) Describe the circumstances in which it would not be possible to rely on
the work of the internal auditors.
d) Explain why it will be necessary for your firm to perform its own work
in certain audit areas in addition to relying on the work performed by
internal audit. (4 marks)