Most of us have been able to keep functioning effectively during Covid because we are connected to an electronic world. A world which, from the comfort of our homes, has allowed many of us to send messages, hold virtual meetings, and access documents from many different sources. However, this has not been the case everywhere, and for auditors in many SAIs life has been much more difficult. They have often not been able to travel to their main offices or auditees during various lock downs nor have they had the functioning networks to work effectively and securely from home. Where they have wanted to interact with colleagues elsewhere or hold digital meetings, internets have often proved to be unreliable with connections constantly, and frustratingly falling out.
However, the pandemic has taught us much and SAIs in difficult circumstances have often demonstrated considerable creativity and resilience. INTOSAI’s Capacity Building Committee’s workstream on Auditing in Complex and Challenging Contexts (ACCC) has sought to capture some of this richness in its new infographic on Getting Connected. The document is not a classic “how-to” manual but more of a compendium of ideas gleamed from practitioners. To implement many of the suggested solutions will require help from qualified and experienced ICT specialist, but the ideas and suggestions contained in this publication should contribute to more informed debates and discussions within SAIs. It should allow the non-specialists to better understand what questions need to be asked. In particular, the compendium seeks to remind readers why Getting Connected is important, how to assess where we are at the moment, and begin to explore what are the many tools and options which exist to help us overcome some of the current barriers we face.
At the end of the document is a selection of case studies of some of the pathways being pursued by SAIs operating in challenging and complex contexts. It is hoped that this publication will encourage others to document and share their own journeys. In time, improved satellite coverage will make current barriers to communication less problematic but in the meantime, we hope the advice contained in Getting connected will make communications within SAIs, and between SAIs and their auditees a little easier.
Find the infographic here: Getting Connected.
Please note that the official launch of the infographic will take place on 9 November in a webinar. Look out for further information here on the website, regarding login details etc. Do you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Anna Jannesson firstname.lastname@example.org.