Effective Date:  08/15/1996

Internal Audit Polices and Procedures

Chapter 7 - Professional Proficiency

The challenge of auditing in the dynamic, complex environment of higher education requires members of the internal audit staff to possess the highest level of professional abilities. Ultimately, professional proficiency is a personal responsibility, however, our department is committed to assisting each staff member to meet that responsibility.

Professional proficiency implies having up-to-date knowledge and abilities related to higher education, financial management, and governmental policies as well as accounting and auditing issues. Professional proficiency is achieved and enhanced through formal education, on-the-job-training, continuing education programs, professional certifications, and service to the profession. Professional proficiency can be demonstrated only through job performance.

Formal Education:

The department requires that internal auditors have earned a degree or certificate in one of the following disciplines: accounting, business administration, information systems, or industrial engineering. This education provides the foundation of the knowledge needed to carry out our duties.

The department encourages and supports the pursuit of advanced academic degrees. For courses taken at UNC, assistance is provided in accordance with the University policies.

On-the-Job Training:

Performing audits and special projects provides an opportunity to develop and enhance audit skills. Auditors should share knowledge with each other and work with the Director to ensure that each job is a positive learning experience.

Continuing Education Programs:

The audit plan allocates time for each staff member to obtain up to 50 hours of continuing professional education each year. Actual hours approved will depend on the scheduling demands of work assignments, courses available, and individual training needs. Every effort will be made to provide auditors who hold professional certifications with the training required to maintain these certifications.

Our financial budget supports attendance at professional education programs. So that we can maximize the benefit from our training budget, professional education should be obtained from the lowest cost alternative that meets the training objective. Internal sources, such as Human Resources or the Office of Information Technology, are preferable to outside providers. Local courses and conferences are preferable to those that will require long-distance travel and an overnight stay.

As part of the annual work performance and planning process each year, each auditor and the Director will prepare a professional development plan to assist in targeting appropriate continuing education programs. Each auditor is responsible for obtaining the minimum CPE hours required to meet the Government Auditing Standards.

Professional Certifications:

The department strongly encourages each staff member to pursue appropriate professional certifications as a way to continue the learning process and to demonstrate professional proficiency. The department provides administrative time to take certification examinations as described in the Office Policies and Procedures chapter of this Manual.

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