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The main goal of the Assurance and Advisory Services Division (AASD) is to support the achievement of the mission of UNRWA and the fulfilment of its accountabilities through independent and objective assurance and advisory services that assess the effectiveness of UNRWA risk management, internal controls and governance processes.
This is done through a systematic and disciplined review of the effectiveness and adequacy of risk management, controls and governance processes at all levels across the Agency’s headquarter and field offices. The scope of work includes assurance (audit and inspections), advisory services and inspections of physical assets across UNRWA.
The internal audit activity assesses the adequacy of processes in place to ensure that:
- resources are acquired economically and used efficiently
- assets are safeguarded
- significant programme results, plans, and business objectives are achieved
- significant financial, managerial and operating information is accurate, reliable and timely, and
- activities comply with regulations, rules and other administrative issuances, policies
In addition to that, the purpose of advisory services is to add value and improve UNRWA governance, risk management and control processes, without the internal auditor assuming management responsibility. Examples include counsel, advice, facilitation and training.
AASD uses a risk-based approach in developing its work plan. The purpose of risk-based work planning is to ensure that all audits and inspections are justified and sound, and that the resources of DIOS are allocated to the most significant risk areas.
Risk-based workplans help AASD identify what to audit from a multitude of business work processes and activities by taking into consideration the most critical objectives and goals of UNRWA as well as how the related departments, offices, processes and activities have been established to meet organizational goals.
There are four main stages to each audit assignment: planning, fieldwork, reporting and following up. All AASD activities are performed in accordance with the methodology which is designed to be in compliance with the International Standards for Professional Practices of Internal Auditing of the Institute of Internal Auditors, and good practices applied by otheragencies in the UN system.
Internal Audit Reports and Audit Recommendations
At the end of each assignment, AASD issues an audit report. Audit reports provide transparency regarding the operations of UNRWA and also provide assurance and reporting to management to encourage improved economy, effectiveness and efficiency in the management of the Agency’s operations and activities.
Internal audit reports contain recommendations to improve governance, risk management and internal control processes. Programme managers are expected to promptly act on the audit results and recommendations and to report periodically to AASD on the status of their implementation. AASD follows up and monitors its audit recommendations until they are implemented.
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