The International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI) Supervisory Committee on Emerging Issues (SCEI) Expert Group on the Strategic Role of Supreme Audit Institutions (SAIs) in Addressing Challenges Posed by the COVID-19 Pandemic hosted a webinar on “Remote Auditing: Technological Challenges and Solutions,” July 24, 2020.
More than 150 delegates representing an estimated 50 SAIs participated in the event to discuss achieving high-level flexibility using technology and modern data-driven approaches without compromising audit objectives.
The webinar included an interactive survey asking participants to provide thoughts on the most challenging technological aspects in working remotely. Topics receiving the heaviest level of responses included security, infrastructure, information security, connectivity and bandwidth.
The SAIs of Indonesia, France, Peru, Russia, United Kingdom and United States shared experiences in implementing remote work during the pandemic. Each nation had varying degrees of preparedness. Some SAIs were able to use past investments in remote work technology as building blocks for a 100% telework posture without significant impact on service delivery.
Common challenges mentioned included ensuring connectivity and data security, configuring hardware and software, finding appropriate platforms to meet the increased demand for online communication, and developing new work processes. To address these challenges, potential solutions included purchasing and deploying relevant equipment, finding new ways to engage and implementing flexible work policies.
During the meeting, the SCEI Expert Group announced the distribution of a survey to gauge SAI pandemic response measures. Survey responses will form the basis for SCEI Expert Group recommendations to the INTOSAI Governing Board in November.
Survey responses will also be represented in the “International Observatory on COVID-19,” an information-sharing platform recently launched by SAI Peru that provides government and SAI experiences in responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic. The platform, an analytical, interactive and visual component of the SCEI Expert Group, currently maps data from 64 countries, which can also be viewed by INTOSAI region.