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IIA-Jamaica Celebrates Awareness Month

Throughout the month of May, IIA chapters and Institutes around the globe have a special opportunity to reach out to their peers, local communities, and future internal auditors to celebrate the profession and help shape how it's viewed. Since the inception of International Internal Audit Awareness Month several years ago, many have shown impressive creativity in demonstrating the importance of the profession.

IIA-Jamaica, for example, takes great pride in International Internal Audit Awareness Month and over the last few years has grown its celebration itinerary steadily to encompass the entire island. David Hall, president of IIA-Jamaica, shares his thoughts on the chapter’s outstanding promotional efforts:

What does International Internal Audit Awareness Month mean to your chapter?
It creates an opportunity for us to inform our stakeholders — such as the board of directors, audit committee members, senior management, and others — about the value of an effective internal audit function. Our activities throughout the month promote an awareness of professionalism across the private and public sectors. The driving force behind what we do is The IIA’s theme, “Progress Through Sharing.”

A number of companies, board members, audit committee members, senior managers, and even internal auditors are not aware of the some of the changes in the profession, including advanced certification, improved governance, alignment with the business strategy, value creation, advances in risk management, fraud assessment, corporate governance, and best practice. IIA-Jamaica is striving to lead the charge in creating greater awareness. This has resulted in a 30 percent increase in our membership over the past two years, record-breaking attendance at our training offerings, increased sponsorship and partnership with corporate Jamaica, and members of the board being sought as speakers at major events.

Do you place any extra responsibility on yourself and your chapter to promote internal auditing as a profession?
Our vision in starting the initiative three years ago was to impact the profession, not only locally but also regionally and internationally. A number of companies in Jamaica are regional and international in scope, and therefore a lot of the advocacy activities held through the month impact the decision makers of those companies who may be based in other countries worldwide. We believe it’s essential that Jamaica’s internal audit profession is seen as practicing in accordance with the profession’s standards. IIA-Jamaica carries this mandate year-round, but especially in May.

Has social media changed the way you spread the message of internal auditing?
Social media has assisted in the promotion of International Internal Audit Awareness Month in a great way. This month we will be utilizing Facebook and Twitter much more than in the past. Social media keeps our message current and has reduced the amount of letters and invitations we have to print. It also allows us to reach a larger audience directly.

What are some of the fun activities IIA-Jamaica has planned for International Internal Audit Awareness month?
We have several events planned, including our annual general meeting and awards banquet, a chief audit executive roundtable on anti-piracy, a training seminar on board effectiveness, a supplement in the local newspaper that highlights the work and achievement of our chapter over the past year, and a joint seminar from The IIA and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Jamaica, Driving Performance Through Internal Audit.

For our team, there’s a certain level of collaboration and camaraderie that occurs when the various groups get together during our International Internal Audit Awareness Month planning sessions. We also hold one special activity each year to assist a children’s home in Jamaica, so the happiness we get to share with the children always makes it a fun experience.

The IIA offers a wide range of resources to help you spread the word about internal auditing during May -- and throughout the year. The Building Awareness Toolkit is your one-stop shop for accessing these resources, which include graphic imagery, PowerPoint presentations, printed brochures, sample programs, videos, advocacy and media relations tips, and more! Full of creative ideas, educational materials, and templates, this toolkit helps individuals, chapters, and IIA Institutes plan awareness activities designed to elevate understanding and appreciation of the internal audit profession.

It’s not too late. Download the toolkit today. Then, tell the world what your IIA chapter or Institute is doing to participate in International Internal Audit Awareness Month. Fill us in at The IIA's Facebook page.