Transforming Internal Audit: how to become a Sustainability Business Partner


Transforming Internal Audit

How to become a Sustainability Business Partner

The involvement of Internal Audit (IA) professionals in sustainability provides an opportunity to realign the profession with its stakeholders and seize its moment to engage at a strategic level. IA has both the capability and connections to make an invaluable contribution. In this article three integrated pillars and practical advice are shared that can help IA functions in fulfilling their sustainability position.

Why Internal Audit is urged to act

As more and more organisations define their sustainability roadmap, they will need the advice and support of Internal Audit in making the action happen. Our recent consultations with a group of 35 Heads of Internal Audit at the IIA pre-conference in 2022 (Instituut van Internal Auditors 2022) confirmed that this shift is both happening and accelerating. Climate change is catalysing a significant response at board level, with IA becoming more involved at a strategic level, and factoring environmental sustainability and ESG into everything they do.

Practial steps - the three sustainability pillars

Per our three pillars, the key for Internal Audit into having that seat on a strategic level is investing in knowledge, business partnering within all three lines, and ensuring the sustainability agenda runs deep within all of the Internal audit activities.

Meeting future needs

For the purpose of developing the sustainability Internal Audit response that will fit your organisations needs, Deloitte classifies organisations four ways, depending on the extent to which they have embraced sustainability: follower, mature, leader and innovator. Want to explore the potential to develop a deeper and more meaningful role within the organisation? Please read our full article in the 'Maandblad voor Accountancy en Bedrijfseconomie'. The time for Internal Audit to act is now.

Transforming Internal Audit: how to become a sustainability partner

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