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​Meet William Chan: Engineering Career Success

William ChanWilliam Chan, CIA
Manager, Technical Audit
Electricity Transmission and Distribution Service Provider
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

1. What prompted you to become certified?

Prior to my current role in internal audit, I was working in a more “technically-oriented” role within the company, with very limited knowledge about internal audit. I soon found that I wanted to strengthen my knowledge in the areas of risk management, internal controls, and the International Professional Practices Framework (IPPF). My manager recommended attending the Tools and Techniques for Auditors workshop hosted by The IIA to provide me with an overview of essential internal auditing skill sets. Through the workshop, I learned about the CIA certification offered by The IIA. I decided to earn my CIA to become more effective in my role and to build credibility with stakeholders.

2. What IIA certification(s) do you hold, and why did you choose to pursue it (them)? Do you plan to pursue other IIA certifications, and if so, which ones and why?

I currently hold the Certified Internal Auditor (CIA). I plan to pursue the Certification in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA) in the near future to further strengthen my skills in risk management and the performance of risk-based audits.

3. How does having an IIA certification(s) set you apart from your non-certified peers?

The certification provides me with a common language (“framework”) with other certified auditors to better communicate with stakeholders on our assessment criteria, methodology, and internal auditing standards that govern our work.

4. How has your IIA certification(s) helped your career?

The CIA has helped expand my knowledge in assessing the control environment of an entity. At the business/process level, it has strengthened my ability to identify key controls that may need improvement through conducting a risk-based assessment. 

5. Has earning the IIA certification(s) enhanced your skill level?

Absolutely. Earning my CIA has greatly improved my knowledge in the assessment of governance, risk management, and internal controls.

6. What advice do you have for others who are considering obtaining an IIA certification?

If you are considering a career in internal auditing or simply want to improve your knowledge as a practicing internal auditor, obtaining the CIA designation provides a nice stepping stone towards the next step in your career.

7. How does career planning and development play a part in your growth?

I am actively engaged with my supervisor in the development of a personalized development plan to promote personal growth in my career. Development activities range from expanding my specific field of expertise or educating others on internal audit’s role in the company, to finding more effective ways to perform risk-based audits. These activities are crucial for auditors to maintain the level of competence required to effectively perform our audit work.

8. What’s the best career advice you’ve ever received?

A past manager once told me that we should always be challenged in our daily work. The day that you feel your job is too comfortable and everything is within your control, is the day you should start looking for a new job.


William Chan, CIA serves as an audit manager in the internal audit division of an electricity transmission and distribution company located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Chan is a Professional Engineer (P.E.) and has earned a Master’s Degree in Business Administration (MBA). He has 14 years of experience in the electric power system industry including transmission and distribution planning and design, distributed generation connections, standards development, customer response, and power quality. In addition to being a Certified Internal Auditor® (CIA®) through The Institute of Internal Auditors, Chan is an active member of the North American Transmission Forum and the Professional Engineers Ontario.

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About the CIA

As the only globally recognized certification for internal auditors and The IIA’s flagship credential for more than 40 years, the CIA sets the standard for excellence in the profession. Learn more.