A Day in the Life of a Senior Internal Audit Manager
Reading the job description will only get you so far when it comes to getting a sense of working in internal audit, so Simon Wright, Director of CareersinAudit.com spoke to a former Associate Director of Internal Audit at KPMG to understand what a day in the life of a Senior Internal Audit Manager really looks like.
The first thing to acknowledge is that the role is pretty fluid. On any given day there may be meetings scheduled and paperwork to review but those tasks may be benched should more urgent issues arise. Typically, you’ll check your emails when you get to the office and more often than not there will be urgent matters to address, so it can be difficult to know what to expect from day to day.
“There have been days when I’ve gone to work and not even touched what I’m supposed to do because other things have come up,” says our Associate Director, “clients have phoned and I’ve had to change my day constantly to address other more urgent issues than what I’d had planned. So, you come out at the end of the day not having started what you’d wanted to.”
As a Senior Internal Audit Manager, especially in a consulting firm like one of the Big Four, you can expect to start the day with a full calendar of meetings scheduled by your team to review work or sit down with clients to go over any concerns they may have or elicit their input on certain points. You’d also have meetings with your partners.
“It’s a lot about people management skills rather than only the delivery of work,” explains our Associate Director.
The senior manager role comprises a few things, the first being the fact that you’re the primary contact between your clients and the firm. The general structure of the firm sees senior managers sitting above managers and then a couple of levels of juniors. You are the overall person responsible for managing the delivery of internal audits to your clients as you are their key contact.
Additionally, your role will include business development. Part of your job will involve responding to tenders that come out by preparing proposal documents; you’ll also be cold calling clients or meeting prospective clients as you look for ways to bring additional work into the firm.
You will also get involved in internal roles within the business, which could range from managing to HR-related roles where you’d offer support in areas like recruiting, or it could be a finance oriented role where you’re monitoring people’s revenues and so on, or you could be looking at general operational type responsibilities.
“Most senior managers also have a performance management type role,” says our Associate Director. This involves periodic meetings with the juniors under your remit to assess their performance and to find out how well they’re working on different projects and with the various managers.
As a key contact between client and firm you will also be managing specialists from other department within the firm that are working on your teams to deliver audits.