Agenda item

Internal Update Report April - August 2023

The report of the Chief Officer Financial Services provides a source of assurance that the internal control environment is operating as intended through a summary of the Internal Audit activity for the period April to August 2023.


The Senior Head of Audit, Corporate Governance and Insurance presented a report providing a source of assurance that the internal control environment is operating as intended through a summary of the Internal Audit activity for the period from April to August 2023.


The Committee were informed of the following points:

  • 27 reports had been issued in the reporting period.
  • Appendix A provided a summary of the work completed by Internal Audit during the reporting period. Whilst there were some limited assurance opinions, this reinforced the success of Audit planning and the opportunity taken to add value. It was highlighted that Directorates had responded positively to the actions agreed and that follow ups would be made on the recommendations.
  • It was the view that the trackers had increased a level of openness, and these were detailed in the table on page 88 of the agenda pack. Members attention was directed to an error in the table in relation to Children and Families. The figure under the 6-12 months in the column marked High should read 0 not 8.
  • Appendix B provided a summary on the various activities that provide assurance on the performance and quality of the work undertaken by Internal Audit, along with the continuous improvement of the section. It was noted that the team had performed and adjusted well after the recent restructure.
  • The Team have planned assignments as the audit year rolls to the Annual Opinion and there was confidence there was a robust process for prioritising the resources available for audits this year.


In response to questions and comments from Members the following information was provided:

  • In relation to the table at 4.4 of Appendix 1 it asked for more information in relation to the opinion given for Special Educational Needs. Members were advised that the controls introduced to address the weaknesses found in previous audits had not had time to be embedded and the opinion in the table related to this.
  • Members requested that a ‘total column’ be included on the table on page 88. This request was noted for future reports.
  • It was noted that 2 of the specific audits on schools were recorded as behind on targets as there were access restrictions to the trackers and it was difficult to get progress updates. The Committee were advised that both schools were on the schedule for follow up.
  • The team were continually reviewing processes and reflecting on intelligence provided, but this approach was better than had previously.
  • In response to a question around Education Health Care Packages, it was noted that Scrutiny was currently engaged in looking at this area and that it is important for that work to run its course.
  • It was noted that the Annual Report did used to be in July. However, after Covid the report had been moved to November. Discussions had taken place with partner authorities, and it was not uncommon for the Annual Report to be presented later in the year.
  • Members asked if some of the outstanding transformational recommendations were reliant on IT. It was agreed that opportunities will be explored to provide greater information on the themes and root causes behind recommendations not implemented in accordance with the target date.


The Committee’s Independent Member wished it to be noted that she thanked Internal Audit on the actions they had taken with the tracking process. It provided the Committee with more information and in some cases that did lead to more questions, but this was an improvement. She said ‘well done’ to the team.



a) receive the Internal Audit Update Report covering the period from April to August 2023 and note the work undertaken by Internal Audit during the period covered by the report.

b) note that there have been no limitations in scope, and nothing has arisen to compromise the independence of Internal Audit during the reporting period.

c) receive the report providing information relating to the Monitoring of Urgent Decisions covering the period April to August 2023.



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