This program is designed to help auditors at all levels write effective audit reports more easily. Participants in the program learn a new approach to writing that enables them to write more persuasively and more quickly. With this new approach, auditors can complete an audit report in one and one half drafts. The approach also provides a means of reviewing work with auditees before the final report is written. This saves time for both the staff and the senior auditor, and can greatly reduce the turnaround time of a report. All these energy and time saving measures translate into more productive use of the auditor's time.

The program emphasizes:

Program design

This workshop stresses preparation - "thinking before you write" - because a systematic approach to writing is the best time management tool there is (for both writer and reader) and because the effectiveness of any audit report depends on the quality of the reasoning behind it.

During the first morning we work through the process of developing logical content using a case based on an internal audit situation common to the client organization. Because the case is similar to a situation the participants actually face, and because we also develop exercises from the client's materials, auditors find it easy to see how the system can work for them on the job. Participants then apply the process to their own work and write part of an audit report during the workshop. In addition, we show participants how to review and revise their writing and how to format and highlight their reports (using headings and bullets) to make them more compelling and readable. For some clients, we include discussion of using charts and graphs in audit reports.

The workshop concludes with an individual coaching session for each participant. The combination of a workshop session for the whole group and individual sessions with the instructor provides for a greater interchange of ideas and more detailed feedback.

Program development

To customize the workshop, we use samples of audit reports preferably from people no longer in the organization. We use these to ensure that the case we design is meaningful to the participants, and as the basis for logic exercises. We disguise materials if necessary. We also ask to see something from each participant before the workshop itself to use in the individual sessions.

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