Scottish Borders Council

Agenda item

Internal Audit Work to February 2019

Consider a report by Chief Officer Audit & Risk on findings from recent work carried out by Internal Audit, including the recommended audit actions agreed by Management to improve internal controls and governance arrangements, and Internal Audit work currently in progress.  (Copy attached).


6.1       With reference to paragraph 3 of the Minute of 14 February 2019, there had been circulated copies of a report by the Chief Officer Audit and Risk which provided details of the recent work carried out by Internal Audit and the recommended audit actions agreed by Management to improve internal controls and governance arrangements. The work Internal Audit had carried out during the period 15 December 2018 to 22 February 2019 was detailed in the report.  During the period a total of six Final Internal Audit reports had been issued.  There had been one recommendation made which related to one of the reports which had been accepted by Management for implementation.  An Executive Summary of the final Internal Audit reports issued, included audit objective, findings, good practice, recommendations (where appropriate) and the Chief Officer Audit and Risk’s independent and objective opinion on the adequacy of the control environment and governance arrangements within each audit area, was shown in Appendix 1 to the report.  The SBC Internal Audit function conformed to the professional standards as set out in Public Sector Internal Audit Standards (PSIAS) (2017) including the production of this report to communicate the results of the reviews. 


6.2       Ms Stacey highlighted some aspects of the Internal Audit Assurance Work In Progress: the programme of work showed that the Winter Service timescale, as part of the transformation programme, had moved and had been built into the audit plan 2019/20; and the engagement in the design, development and delivery of the Contract Management Framework by the Contract Management Working Group, incorporating the ICT Contract, would be launched in 2019 and a report would be produced in 2019/20.  Reference was made by Ms Stacey to each of the Internal Audit Final Assurance Reports detailed in the Appendix to the report: Capital Investment; Financial Planning; Private Sector Landlord Registration; Adult Social Care Self-Directed Support; Protective Services; and Information Governance.  In response to a question on how SBC compared to other Councils with regard to workforce issues raised, Ms Stacey stated that the issues were amplified in rural areas and Protective Services Management were liaising with other Councils and national bodies to consider actions to address the challenges which would continue to be recorded through the people planning process. Mr Robertson advised that the financial planning process 2019/20 lessons learned results would be reviewed by Corporate Management Team and would be brought back to this Committee for review.  In response to a concern about lack of progress with implementing some audit recommendations by Management, and after a full discussion on the Internal Audit follow-up process, Members requested a further recommendation be added to reflect the discussion on the escalation process of overdue audit recommendations to Corporate Management Team. The Chief Financial Officer stated that this recommendation would be highlighted to Corporate Management Team.



(a)        NOTED:-


(i)      the final assurance reports issued in the period from 15 December 2018 to 22 February 2019 associated with the delivery of the approved Internal Audit Annual Plan 2018/19; and


(ii)     the Internal Audit consultancy and other work undertaken in this period.


(b)       AGREED:-


(i)        to acknowledge the assurance provided on internal controls and governance arrangements in place for the areas covered by this Internal Audit work;


(ii)       that the financial planning 2019/20 lessons learned results would be brought back to this Committee following the review by Corporate Management Team; and


(iii)      that as part of the Internal Audit follow-up process  any deviation from agreed timescales of actions be escalated as appropriate to Corporate Management Team.


Supporting documents:



Scottish Borders Council

Council Headquarters Newtown St. Boswells Melrose TD6 0SA

Tel: 0300 100 1800


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