Symbiant Tracker is a recommendations and issues tracking database solution. It sits on a corporate intranet or the internet with our SaaS offering, and is managed by the Internal Audit department. The key feature of this tool is that, unlike many recommendations tracking tools, it is designed to be accessed and updated by the auditees, who have been assigned the recommendation in the process of agreeing the internal audit report.
Being intranet or internet based, auditees can easily be given access to the recommendations relating to them. At any point in time, the database therefore holds the latest update on the implementation of each recommendation.
Internal Audit departments main product is an audit report, or rather a series of audit reports, one for each internal audit they perform within a business each year. These reports contain recommendations relating to the weaknesses that they have found in the part of the business they were auditing.When these recommendations are implemented, the weaknesses should be resolved and any risks managed. If the recommendations are implemented it gives assurance to a company’s management that weaknesses in the operation have been addressed. If recommendations are not implemented then the internal audit effort has been a waste of time. Internal Audit usually (or should) report to the Audit Committee (sub-committee of the Board, chaired by a non-executive director) once or twice a year on how far and how well recommendations have been implemented and they usually do this by running around in the days before the Committee meeting trying to find out what has been happening. The new combined code on corporate governance (Turnbull) requires audit committees to assess the effectiveness of internal audit departments on a regular basis and one of the key things in this evaluation will be how many recommendations made have actually been implemented. Tracker gives a unique approach which is:-
Intranet or internet based to allow ease of aggregation and reporting
It puts the onus on the person to whom the action is assigned to report on where they are at with the recommendation – i.e. it introduces ownership for resolving weaknesses and raises the profile of these issues.
Letting auditees know of new recommendations assigned to them and alerting them when an existing action is due/overdue or updated
Allowing auditees to update their progress on-line which saves your time and keeps the issue progress up to date in real time
All parties involved in the issue can add comments or ask questions relating to an issue and all dialogue is stored with the issue so a full history can be viewed
Tracking issues/recommendations separately instead of having to track at the report level although you can produce a progress report at the audit report level
Run reports on whole range of combinations including against respondents so you can see where the sticking points are in the organisation
When you do need to produce a report, you can effortlessly produce precise information that is up to date and also explain any failures or missed deadlines and who was responsible
It should also be noted that companies that have to comply with the US requirement known as Sarbanes-Oxley Section 404, Turnbull and the European 8th Directive will also find Symbiant Tracker useful to track remediation issues. Why not try a risk free trial for yourself and see how Tracker can benefit you and your company.