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To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what criteria (a) his Department and (b) its public bodies use when deciding whether and when to hold an internal audit; and if he will make a statement.
This Department's internal audit function is provided by the Department for Communities and Local Government's Internal Audit Services (IAS), which operates to Government Internal Audit Standards. IAS produces an annual audit plan that is agreed with the Department on the basis of need, priority and expected value added, and is approved by its Audit and Risk Committee (ARC). The plan includes a core package of audits on controls and compliance, necessary to provide assurance to the accounting officer at the year end and which will support the annual Governance Statement (which replaces the Statement on Internal Control this financial year). In addition, there is a programme of risk-based work, which reflects the Department's priorities and high-level risk registers and is developed during the year in the light of changes in the risk environment. The plan also contains a flexible allowance—for ad hoc advisory work and to enable timely response to changes in risk profile or other developments during the year. Prior experience, assessment of urgency and regular contact with senior management, the ARC and the National Audit Office all inform the precise timing of individual internal audits.
The equivalent information for the Department's public bodies is not held centrally, though the criteria used by them would be set by each individual body's own board and audit committee.