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The Institute of Internal Auditors North AmericaBreadcrumb SeparatorNewsBreadcrumb SeparatorBlog: Writing an Impactful Audit Report: 6 Tips for Being More Persuasive

Read Richard Chambers' Latest Blog
Writing an Impactful Audit Report: 6 Tips for Being More Persuasive

In his blog, IIA President and CEO Richard Chambers, CIA, QIAL, CGAP, CCSA, CRMA, shares his personal reflections and insights on the internal audit profession. Here's an excerpt from his latest post:

If you ask internal auditors why they write audit reports, some might answer that it's to communicate an engagement's objectives, scope, and results. Others might offer that it's to describe what the auditors found and to make recommendations for improvement. But the ultimate objective of internal audit reporting is not to describe what we found or to make recommendations for improvement. It is to persuade readers to take action.

Impact is imperative, but not all internal auditors realize the difference that writing style can make to ensure corrective action is complete and timely. The content of a report informs readers, but I would argue that writing style is what motivates. For example, when the U.S. Army tested two versions of a business message asking readers to perform a specific task, those who received a well-written, "high impact" letter were twice as likely to comply with the memo on the day they received it.

During my career as an internal auditor, I wrote or edited hundreds of internal audit reports — some that were good, and some that could have used another round of edits. Following are some recommendations that can help ensure your audit reports are effective — that they will not only change minds but that they will create a call to action that gets results.

Read the full InternalAuditor.org blog post from IIA President and CEO Richard Chambers.