By Robert Romano, APA Chief Executive, December 14, 2018 9:31:01Federal auditors have a long history of auditing businesses and governments, but the public’s trust in them has waned in recent years.
A recent review of auditors’ performance in the U.S. found that, despite efforts to increase transparency and improve their work, auditors are failing to keep pace with technology and have been unable to provide the services needed to keep the country safe.
A new audit from the Government Accountability Office finds that many government agencies do not have a strong audit workforce, and that this situation has led to poor outcomes for taxpayers.
In the U, audits performed by auditors to protect federal workers and contractors are often delayed, botched or not completed at all, according to the GAO.
A key challenge is that many of the federal agencies that have auditors also have the responsibility of overseeing and overseeing those auditors.
These agencies also do not consistently maintain and document their work.
That’s a big issue for taxpayers because auditors often perform work on the government’s behalf, which can be crucial for making sure auditors don’t do things that could cause a problem, such as falsifying data or failing to follow regulations.
“While the GAI review is critical, it does not fully address all of the critical areas where auditors fail to provide services,” the report states.
“For example, the GA I auditors reported only that they completed audit work on a single occasion, but it is not clear why.”
GAO said it identified some areas where the GA’s audit work was lacking: For example, auditing government contractors is not properly tracked, as is ensuring that auditors report only what they do and do not do, and what they need to do to make sure their work is properly documented and tracked.
For audits performed to protect government workers, the auditors needed to track the time it took to complete the audit, including whether it took more than 90 days to complete.
For a government agency that is responsible for auditing workers, a more comprehensive audit would have shown if the agency was meeting the criteria for an audit to occur and, if so, whether it was a timely completion.
“As a result, the audit service has failed to ensure that it is working to fulfill its mission to protect the public,” GAO wrote.
“It also has failed in a number of important ways to ensure its services are provided to those who need them most.”
Auditors also struggled to keep up with the rapid technological change that has allowed for more data and better auditing tools.
GAO found that auditing agencies are often unprepared to deal with the changing technology and to keep their work focused on the task at hand.
For example; auditors typically use technology to check for inconsistencies between records or data, such that the data is sometimes not accurate, according the GA.
“Although these technologies have improved in recent decades, they do not meet the needs of the current audit environment, and they have not been properly maintained,” GAOC wrote.
GAOC also noted that some of the auditing services audited did not have the capability to process a wide range of data, which could affect the accuracy of the information they provided.
“The GAI auditors were unable to find information that they could use to identify any of these limitations,” GAOW said.
The GAO also found that the GA audit services did not always have adequate oversight and documentation of the work they were doing.
In some cases, GAO’s auditors found that GAO had not provided the agency with all the information needed to properly conduct an audit.
GAOW found that agencies did not routinely audit their auditing work, or properly track their work to ensure it was being performed correctly.
GAIO said it took several steps to address GAO recommendations and identified several improvements.
“We are also taking additional steps to improve the audit services and to ensure auditors can deliver their work,” GAIO wrote.
For instance, GAOW added a new oversight system that is designed to give auditors more tools to audit government work, and to document and share audits with other federal agencies.
GAI said it is also reviewing the audit systems of several other federal departments to ensure the audit work it performs is not being misused.
GAOs audit efforts were criticized by other government agencies, such the Office of Personnel Management, which has been conducting its own review of its own auditing programs.