Provide an objective examination of evidence for the purpose of providing an independent assessment on risk management, control, or governance processes for the organization. Examples may include financial, performance, compliance, system security, and due diligence engagements. Assurance services add value by improving opportunities to achieve organizational objectives, identifying operational improvement, and/or reducing risk exposure. Additionally, in accordance with the Blue Plains Inter-municipal Agreement, WSSC (as a Party to the Agreement) is authorized to audit, examine, inspect, or reproduce the books, accounts, records, documents, and other evidence supporting Blue Plains operating and maintenance costs and user fees. The Internal Audit Office conducts an audit to ascertain whether adjustments are warranted for previously remitted quarterly and year-end adjustment payments from WSSC to the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water).
Continuous auditing involves performing control and risk assessments on a frequent basis, if not virtually in real-time. The need to accelerate audit activities has led to the increased adoption of continuous auditing as a vital monitoring tool. Continuous auditing is therefore designed to enable auditors to report on a subject matter within a much shorter timeframe than under the traditional model. The ability to provide management with real-time auditing on the functioning of controls and on financial transactions can enhance significantly management's ability to make key business decisions. The areas designated for continuous auditing (biweekly payroll reviews, accounts payable, Purchase cards, physical inventory counts, and fiscal year-end payroll reviews) are highly susceptible areas for fraudulent activities.
Advisory and related client service activities, the nature and scope of which are agreed upon with the client and which are intended to add value and improve an organization’s governance, risk management, and control processes without the internal auditor assuming management responsibility. Examples include counsel, advice, facilitation, and training. Consulting services add value by improving opportunities to achieve organizational objectives, identifying operational improvement, and/or reducing risk exposure. Our informal consulting engagements consist of limited-life projects, ad hoc meetings, routine information exchange, and review of standard policies, procedures, manual, and guidelines. Special consulting engagements involve our participation in system conversions and other IT projects. We also participate in emergency consulting engagements for recovery or maintenance of operations after a disaster or other extraordinary business event.
As required by Public Utilities Article, Section 25-405(d), we will review and approve the costs (through System Development Charges audits) incurred by developers who help build WSSC’s infrastructure. The WSSC’s Fraud, Waste and Abuse Hotline was implemented in the fall of 2011. Since its implementation, a dedicated number of hours are needed to conduct investigations of allegations. In addition to requests from the Commissioners, the department receives requests for audit work from other Teams/Offices or outside stakeholders. These should be performed whenever time permits. Objectivity and audit standards are used.