This global Internal Audit function needed to address a number of the following areas:
- With a rollout of a refreshed ‘gold standard audit methodology’, it was important to ensure this was rigorously adhered to across the function – all geographies and all levels
- The staff attrition rate across the function had reached a high level
- There was a need to boost the leadership capability of the function for the benefit of those within it, as well as raise the profile and perception of the function within the wider business
PotentialSquared partnered with the organization to co-create three Internal Audit Academies which focused on different leadership levels:
1. Communicating and upskilling against a consistent audit methodology
2. Leadership skills and behaviors
3. Creating a strong, organization-wide culture through the formal and informal networking of participants and internal coaches.
The solutions were developed using a series of pilot events that tested the methodology, delivery, and impact of the Academies.
Each Academy drew on the following approaches:
- A case study that reflected the reality of working in the current and future Audit function.
- Use of professional business role players
- Assigning a technical internal coach and behavioral coach from PotentialSquared to support participants throughout the event. Each coach provided 1:1 feedback and a comprehensive development report
- The senior-level Academy included a ‘Day from Hell’ which simulated the typical challenges faced by a senior leader in the Audit function
In addition, PotentialSquared provided coaching to the internal technical coaches which supported their development.
The Academies ran for nine years. This significant investment in learning and development was seen as a key driver in improving longer-term career opportunities within this global bank’s Audit function, thus increasing retention.
The Internal Audit Academies developed in format over time as more responsibility for delivering both technical and behavioral elements moved from co-delivery to being entirely provided by internal coaches. This support by PotentialSquared created a model of independence, developing internal capability within the organization – and making the Academies self-sustaining.