External Audit Procedures

Planning

  • Notification

As WVU units are made aware of requests for external audit activity, they must submit the External Audit Online Notification Form to notify the WVU Internal Audit Office. Information reported on this form includes the current date, University unit/department, University contact information, external audit agency, external audit agency contact information, activity to be audited, audit scope, time period to be audited and date of last audit.  In addition, the notification received from the external audit agency must be forwarded to Internal Audit along with any other pertinent information as part of the external audit request (data request list, etc.). 

  • Authorization

The WVU Internal Audit Office reviews the external audit documentation to determine if oversight is needed and to what extent. Factors considered include, but are not limited to, the requesting external audit agency, information requested, impact on financial statements, and area to be audited. Internal Audit may also request Legal involvement in some cases.

If oversight is determined to be necessary, the Internal Audit Director assigns an Auditor to the external audit. The unit’s Audit Coordinator is the liaison between the University, the external audit agency, and the WVU Internal Audit Office.  Access to University records should be withheld until external audit authorization has been given.

  • Entrance Conference

An Entrance Conference is generally held with University personnel and the external auditor to clarify audit objectives, scope, expected audit procedures, identify points of contact, and discuss availability of records and information. This meeting is planned and facilitated by the Audit Coordinator.  The Internal Auditor assigned to the external audit attends this meeting.

  • Data Request

The external audit agency provides the Audit Coordinator with a list of records needed to perform the external audit, along with the date the records are required.  This list should be forwarded to the WVU Internal Audit Office for review.

In a timely manner, the Audit Coordinator provides access to all records requested by the external audit agency that are relevant to the audit except those that are deemed by the University to be legally privileged or protected.

Fieldwork

  • Audit Fieldwork

The Audit Coordinator works with the external audit agency to coordinate audit fieldwork as needed.  This includes arranging for appropriate workspace and facilities, assisting with specific requests, coordinating meetings, informing Unit and Senior Management (Director/Dean) if serious issues arise that require immediate attention, and requesting Internal Audit assistance during any phase of the external audit process, as needed.

Internal Audit includes a summary of all external audit activity in the “Work in Progress” section of the Audit Committee Report and presents it to the Audit Committee at the next scheduled BOG/Audit Committee meeting.

  • Exit Conference

An exit conference is generally held with University personnel and the external auditor to discuss the overall results of the review as well as the findings and recommendations to be included in the report. The meeting is planned and facilitated by the Audit Coordinator.  The Auditor assigned to the external audit attends this meeting.

Reporting

  • Draft Report

Once the draft report is received from the external audit agency, the Audit Coordinator, Unit Management, and Senior Management (Director/Dean) review the report and provide comments to the WVU Internal Audit Office for review.  Internal Audit advises the WVU department as needed.

  • Response

Unit Management, in coordination with Senior Management (Director/Dean), prepares a response to the external audit agency’s audit report.  Before submission to the external audit agency, this response is sent to Internal Audit for review. Once Unit Management receives any comments from the Internal Audit, the response is sent by the Audit Coordinator to the external audit agency in a timely manner.

  • Final Report

Copies of the external auditor’s final audit report are sent to Unit Management, Senior Management (Director/Dean), and Internal Audit by the Audit Coordinator.  Internal Audit provides a summary of the final audit report and presents it to the Audit Committee at the next scheduled BOG/Audit Committee meeting.

  • Follow-Up & Monitoring

It is Senior Management’s (Director/Dean) responsibility to ensure that the outstanding items, recommendations, and action plans included within in the final audit report are implemented in a reasonable time frame.

Internal Audit tracks all significant audit findings and resolutions through communication with Unit Management and Senior Management (Director/Dean) and performs follow-up audits, as needed.  These issues are included in the Audit Committee report and presented at the next scheduled BOG/Audit Committee meeting.