Let's discuss the benefits of an internal audit and why they are important to your business irrespective of the size of that business.
As I studied for the dual diploma in Business compliance and Quality auditing, one of the assignments was about internal audits and how a small business failed to do an internal audit and went bankrupt. A huge part of the assignment was to identify when an internal audit could have been done and to identify if the issues that led to the business going bankrupt and having major incidents could have been avoided.... the answer was YES, it could have been avoided with regular internal audits and gap analysis.
When we work in a business more than we work in a business, we do not always see the small signs that an external person would.
So, what is an internal audit?
An internal audit involves the business set-up, policies and procedures and documentation. There are different types of audits, such as financial, risk assessment, and more. As an internal audit, the auditor will review the expectations for your business and then provide feedback on what is working and what requires improvement.
When done properly, an internal audit will assist you in preparing for your external audit and can save you thousands of dollars.
Once you have had your internal audit and made any changes that are recommended, you are in a better position in 90% of cases to pass your external audit for your accreditation and registration.
Preparing for your external audit.
There are a couple of things that you can do to help you prepare for your external audit:
1 Research the external auditing company and ask them for a quote, and details of that this quote includes and get it in writing.
2. Create yourself a check list of where all your documents, policies and procedures are in your folders and ensure you have all evidence of what is required for your business for example, examples of shift/progress notes that can be easily accessed.
3. Make sure all your registers are up to date. A great habit to doing this to each time you have an update, complete a risk assessment it goes straight onto the register.
4. Work with a consultant who does internal audits that are based on your external audit and is prepared to spend the time with you to check that documents are being completed properly.
5. Know your documents, policies and procedures for your business especially risk, incidents, complaints, cancelation, staff training where relevant, duty of care and service delivery, contingency plans.
6. Understand the NDIS reportable incident process.
7. Understand the current legislation for disability - at the time of writing this article it is : Disability Services and Inclusion Act 2023
8. Understand and ensure you are compliant with NDIS practice standards.
9. Ensure you are following the NDIS code of conduct.
Remember this is your business and having an internal audit, gap analysis whether you are NDIS registered or not is important for your business long term and it can be a great opportunity to visit your business plan and goals, to see if you could do anything differently.
The audit should be in alignment with the current legislation and consumer law as well as specific industry standards.
Couple of useful links:
We offer internal audits and gap analysis for those who are looking for that service.
Our fees are an hourly rate and will provide a quote which will include the report that you require.
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Disclaimer: All information is general in nature and it is the readers responsibility to ensure they complete their own independent research and work with suitably qualified professionals.