About the Office
Audits provide an independent, objective assessment of the stewardship, performance or cost of policies, programs or operations, and are essential to government accountability to the public.
The purpose of audits can vary, depending on the scope of the audit and the audit objectives.
As auditors, we evaluate the performance of the departments and agencies of Johnson County and often recommend they establish performance measures to improve management oversight and operations. It also makes sense for auditors to establish and use performance measures to manage and report the results of their work. Establishing, monitoring, and reporting performance can enhance credibility by demonstrating the extent to which we are meeting our goals and providing value to Johnson County.
Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS) guide local government auditors nationwide and are issued by the Comptroller General of the United States. These standards require audit organizations to receive an external peer review at least once every three years.
The objective of a peer review is to determine whether an audit organization’s quality control system is suitably designed and is in place and operating effectively. A peer review also provides assurance that an audit organization is following its established policies and procedures and applicable auditing standards.
We rely on the following resources to help guide us in performing our work:
- U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO)
- Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS)
- Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government
- The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA)
- International Professional Practices Framework (IPPF)
- Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission (COSO)
- Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB)
What is an audit?
An audit is an independent, objective review of an organization’s operations, systems or processes and records, designed to add value by improving an organization’s efficiency and effectiveness.
What is a performance audit?
A performance audit is the systematic assessment of a program, function, or operation. A performance audit evaluates economy, efficiency, effectiveness, and compliance.
What is an audit finding?
An audit finding consists of audit results and conclusions based on appropriate analysis and evaluation. Audit findings may be positive (e.g., "...no duplicate payments were found...") or negative (e.g., "...vendor overpayments were found..."). Findings usually result in recommendations that will assist an area to better achieve its business objectives. There are five elements of a finding:
- Condition: What is the problem/issue? What is happening?
- Cause: Why did the condition happen?
- Criteria: How do we, as auditors, know this is a problem? What should be?
- Effect: Why does this condition matter? What is the impact?
- Recommendation: How do we solve the condition? How do we address the cause?
What does audit scope mean?
The scope of an audit is the boundary of the audit and is directly tied to the audit objectives. The scope defines the subject matter that the auditors will assess and report on, such as a particular program or aspect of a program, the necessary documents or records, the period of time reviewed, and the locations that will be included.
What are internal controls?
Internal control is a process, effected by an entity’s governing board, management, and other personnel, designed to provide reasonable assurance regarding the achievement of objectives relating to operations, reporting, and compliance.
What is risk?
Risk is the possibility of an event or condition occurring that will have an impact on the ability of an organization to achieve its objectives.
What is risk assessment?
Risk assessment involves a dynamic process for identifying and assessing risks to the achievement of objectives.
Who receives audit reports?
Audit reports are presented to The Board of County Commissioners and the audited entity. Reports are also available to the public on Audit Services’ web site.
Who audits the auditor?
Internal Audit participates in both internal and external quality assurance assessments. Internal assessments include ongoing monitoring of the performance of the internal audit activity and periodic self-assessments. External assessments are done every three years, and are conducted by a qualified, independent audit team from outside of the organization.