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Development of Audit Documentation IT System (PJ49)

/ Last updated: 4 November 2009 /

The management of the State Audit Office of Hungary (SAO) decided in 2005 to support the documentation of the audit process with the aid of an IT system, thereby facilitating the improvement of the quality, efficiency and transparency of the SAO´s work. In order to implement the project, the SAO applied for and was awarded a support of 270,000 EUR from the 2006 budget of the Transition Facility of the European Union.

Basic information

Project title:   
Project number:
EU fund providing financial support:
Sector:
Location:
Beneficiary:
Time period:
Total budget (net):
Form of activity:
Development of Audit Documentation IT System
2006/018-176.04.02
Transition Facility
Finance
Hungary
 State Audit Office of Hungary
16 months
369 000 EUR (original budget: 362 000 EUR)
service, software development; supply


Project purpose

The purpose of the project was to create an electronic documentation system and a document repository that supports audit documentation processes based on common principles, as well as co-ordinated audit activity both within and amongst audit teams. The system to be set up extends the range of tools available for management control and quality management, and provides an efficient facility to (re)use and share knowledge accumulated in the course of audits. Through the central storage of audit documents related to an audited organisation and the access to these documents by the auditors, the workload on the auditees related to data provision will be significantly reduced. Less resources will be needed for the preparatory works related to audits, which will contribute to the improvement of the efficiency of the audits.

Implementation

The project was divided into two components. The first component was to develop a software system to support the documentation procedures and a database forming the basis of knowledge management. The second component created a central infrastructure that met the special requirements of the documentation system.

The establishment of the IT system was carried out with the involvement of an external software developer company, which was selected in January 2008 through public procurement procedure.

The first phase of software development started in January 2008 and was completed by 1 August 2008 with the approval of the Functional Specification.

Regarding Component 2, the Central Finance and Contracts Unit of the National Development Agency procured the hardware equipment necessary for the operation of the documentation system by means of centralised public procurement procedure, with the participation of SAO experts.

The installation of the infrastructure was completed by the end of September 2008. Following the approval of the System Design, the software development continued with programming. This was followed by installation and testing of the system and the preparation of documentation and training materials.

The delivery of the live documentation system, uploaded with data took place in April 2009, the updated system documentation and the source code were delivered in May 2009.

The internal rules on the application of the Audit Documentation System are in effect as from 15 June 2009. The documentation system shall be used in case of each audit included in the annual audit plan of the SAO that starts after 15 June 2009. Training of users for the application of the system is ongoing and is performed by SAO staff.

Project results

The documentation system implemented in course of the project is a web-based application integrated into the existing software systems of the SAO. Remote access is enabled for the auditors, who are required to comply with the internal security rules. Workflows supporting the audit processes and adapted to the SAO methodology are also built in the system. The Audit Documentation System enables the receipt of digitally certified documents as well.

The expected short term impacts (perceivable within 1-2 years) of the documentation system are the following:

improvement of the efficiency of audits - especially the preparatory works - with the simplification of the document collecting process and utilisation of the materials already collected; reduced resources (in terms of time and labour input) needed for the preparatory works related to audits;
improvement of the efficiency of management quality control and quality assurance by providing on-line access to audit evidence;
more effective team work and wider re-use of knowledge acquired during the audit in course of subsequent audits;
reduction of the burden on the audited organisations related to document supply (by eliminating multiple requests to submit documents);
reduction of the volume of paper-based documents by applying electronic means of communication.

The expected mid-term result (perceivable within 2-5 years) of the implementation of the documentation system shall be the standardisation of the method of documenting audits. The application of the IT system and the respective internal regulatory environment developed in accordance with the IT system shall jointly define the documentation practices which are universally applicable and independent from audit types. This shall support the efficient quality control and interoperability between audit types.