The Federal Court of Accounts of Brazil (TCU) has recently launched a new initiative to enhance the competencies and skills of its auditors. The Professional Trajectories are learning pathways that guide the development of auditors in different areas of expertise, such as auditing, data analysis, fraud and corruption prevention, public policy control, regulation and privatization, and financial audit.
The Professional Trajectories are based on the guidelines set by ISSAI 150 of INTOSAI – International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions. The purpose of this standard is to promote the development of auditor competencies so that their work adds more value to society. The Professional Trajectories present three levels of complexity (fundamental, professional, and expert), which highlight the competencies and requirements needed for technical development or specialization in certain topics.
The fundamental level is aimed at auditors who are new to the field or who want to refresh their basic knowledge and skills. It covers the general concepts and principles of auditing, as well as the main tools and techniques used in audit planning, execution, and reporting. The professional level is aimed at auditors who have some experience in the field and who want to deepen their understanding and application of specific topics or areas. It covers the advanced concepts and methods of auditing, as well as the best practices and standards for quality assurance, risk management, and stakeholder engagement. The expert level is aimed at auditors who have extensive experience in the field and who want to become leaders or references in their domains. It covers the strategic aspects and challenges of auditing, as well as the latest trends and innovations in audit methodology, technology, and communication.
The first trajectory, the audit trajectory, was launched in October 2021, focusing on carrying out performance and compliance audits. Throughout 2022, another 5 trajectories were implemented. Registration is voluntary and open to all TCU auditors. By registering, the auditor has access, through the Trajectories Portal, to various learning objects, which can be complete courses or different multimedia content, such as texts, videos, and reference works, among others.
To achieve each level of development in a trajectory, the auditor must complete the required training courses and have a certain amount of professional experience in relevant areas or topics. The levels are used both to offer learning opportunities and professional opportunities and to allocate roles within TCU.
Two other trajectories are currently being developed: Jurisdictional Function, which addresses the principles of jurisdictional activities of SAIs established by Intosai P-50; and the Leadership Trajectory which aims to guide the behavior of formal and informal TCU leaders.
The Professional Trajectories are an innovative way to foster continuous learning and professional development among TCU auditors. They also align with INTOSAI CBC’s strategic objectives to promote, facilitate and implement INTOSAI-wide initiatives in support of SAI capacity development needs; strategically partner, inside and outside INTOSAI, in support of SAI professionalism, auditor professionalization, and SAIs’ ability to sustainably meet future challenges; and share capacity development insights and practices, and facilitate dialogue on capacity development challenges and opportunities.
The TCU is proud to share this initiative with the INTOSAI CBC community and hopes that it can inspire other SAIs to adopt similar approaches to enhance their capacity development. The TCU also welcomes feedback and suggestions from other SAIs on how to improve and expand the Professional Trajectories.