The Audit, Assurance and Consulting Department maintains SEDCO’s corporate governance standards and enhances the Group’s overall control environment by evaluating the effectiveness and efficiencies of internal controls. Core activities include providing internal audit assurance and advisory services to Group operating companies, while helping investee companies in the role of professional consultant, as and when required.
Staying true to our belief that people make the difference, we carefully handpick our talent in internal audit. Our team includes professionally qualified individuals with significant internal audit and relevant industry experience; knowledge of risks and control processes; a commitment to providing continuity; and consistency.
During 2021, the focus was on auditing activities in line with the approved internal audit plan. We paid special attention to post-pandemic changes in processes, for example, the greater use of technology and remote working, while simultaneously fulfilling ad hoc requests for governance-specific assignments.
Despite the departure of a key resource during the year, the department managed to conclude all planned audits and ad hoc requests on time without compromising quality deliverables.
The department’s evolution from pure auditing to a more consultancy-based role continued during the year, as well as plans to train staff internally to equip them with the required knowledge and skills. Although the pandemic prevented planned training from taking place, our online platform helped team members to continue building their knowledge and deliver training across the Group, in coordination with the Learning and Development team.
Saudization and Vision 2030 were also ongoing priorities, with several experienced professionals supporting the development of local talent by providing on-the-job-coaching.
The department also enhanced the criteria for determining its overall ratings, specifically to improve the quality of service delivery and communications between stakeholders and the department. In the coming year, we have plans to introduce the concept of combined assurance by aligning all assurance processes; to update the internal audit report templates for greater clarity; and to implement the upgraded version of the TeamMate software.