The BarnOwl audit module is a highly configurable audit management solution that supports the full internal audit life cycle of planning, execution, reporting, monitoring, and follow-ups enabling an organisation to streamline and standardise its internal audit processes. The audit module caters for true risk and control based auditing ensuring that the risks that matter to the organisation are audited and the results are updated back into risk management. The audit module provides many standard reports, flexible extracts and final Word audit reports automatically. Advanced business intelligence dashboard reporting enables you to gain insight into ongoing audit findings, root cause analysis, risk analysis, trends, benchmarking etc. The BarnOwl audit module supports and embeds best practices frameworks such as International Professional Practice Framework (IPPF).

The BarnOwl audit module provides:

  • Increased audit coverage with reduced audit time and cost

  • Simplified and standardised audit processes with centralised ‘working-paper’ library for all types of audit: risk & control, ad hoc, forensic, compliance etc.

  • Risk & control based auditing, ensuring that risks that matter to the organisation are audited and aligned back to the business

  • Compliance with the IIA standards and quality assurance review

  • Final audit reports, audit committee reporting, combined assurance reporting at the click of a button

  • online follow-up of findings via web-based action plans (free to unlimited users/auditees)

Internal Audit Software Interactive Image



Audit Universe Management

  • Define and maintain a centralised library including auditable processes, entities, audit objectives, risks, controls and tests
  • Setup the various audit project types and templates using BarnOwl’s Project File Organiser (standard tasks, audit steps, audit programmes, template documents etc.)



Risk Assessment

  • Identify risk areas for assessment
  • Various risk reports and scorecards are used to assist risk and control based audit planning
  • Send out automated risk and control self-assessments via BarnOwl’s web-based voting technology



Audit Planning and Scheduling

  • 3 Year rolling audit plan and resource planning
  • Create an internal audit project from an Audit Plan or directly from Processes and/or the Organisational structure
  • Select the type of audit project which automatically loads
    the relevant Project File Organiser (PFO) template and audit programme/s from the library
  • Select the relevant risks and controls to audit (automatically imported from the risk management module)
  • Allocate resources to the audit project tasks with planned hours



Audit Fieldwork and Execution

  • Execute the audit based on the project file organiser (PFO)/ audit programme/s
  • Complete control adequacy testing and rating
  • Complete effectiveness testing including audit procedures and sample testing
  • Attach evidence
  • Update control effectiveness rating
  • Capture findings or search a library of findings including fields such as standard (criteria), finding, impact, root cause and recommendations
  • Send out findings to management for comment and import management comments automatically
  • Capture audit’s risk assessment ratings
  • Review audit work using the PFO (project file organiser)
  • Capture ‘living’ action plans based on management comments
  • Rate audit objective/s
  • Full preparer, reviewer and sign off functionality with online and offline check-in and check-out
  • Capture and clear review notes
  • Complete and sign off of time sheets



Audit Reporting

  • Generate audit reports from a selection of flexible report templates
  • Generate standard findings reports including action plans
  • Design and generate flexible data extracts directly into Excel
  • Generate final audit reports in Microsoft Word



Audit Finalisation and Alignment
back to Risk Management

  • Clear review notes
  • Close the audit project
  • Perform audit alignment whereby risk management is updated with audit’s risk and control ratings including the import of any new risks and/or controls that may have been identified during the audit
  • Combined assurance reporting showing independent rating of risks and controls by the various assurance providers
  • Automated audit satisfaction surveys



Audit Findings Management
and Monitoring

  • Track and analyse findings and remedial action
  • Automated reminders, notifications and escalation emails and the online completion of action plans by the auditee with audit trail history showing remedial action progress
  • Advanced business intelligence dashboard reporting enabling an organisation to gain insight into ongoing audit issues, root cause analysis, risk analysis, trends, benchmarking etc



Follow-up Audits

  • Create a follow-up project from a completed audit. Findings and execution data (ratings, working papers, etc.) are automatically pulled through into the follow-up audit project from the completed audit project
  • Review the action plan progress and documentation against findings
  • Set status after follow-up e.g. (Resolved, Progress Satisfactory, Progress Unsatisfactory, Unresolved)
  • Raise new findings
  • Generate follow-up report
BarnOwl’s built-in methodology supports best practice audit frameworks such as the International Professional Practice Framework (IPPF).Simplifies the embedding of the best practice audit framework in your organisation.
Configurable audit parameters.

Setup your categories and sub-categories for audit procedures, findings and expenses.

Define your ratings and colour thresholds for projects, audit objectives and findings.

Specify your various resource types (auditor, manager, etc.)
Enables you to configure BarnOwl according to your audit methodology.
Create templates for your various project types (e.g. risk & control based, process based, compliance, forensic, ad-hoc, etc.) using BarnOwl’s flexible project file organiser (PFO).

Predefine the tasks, audit steps, project documents, processes, required findings fields, etc.
Provides a standardised step-by-step audit approach for all types of audit project to facilitate planning, fieldwork, execution, reporting, follow-up and monitoring.
BarnOwl provides a centralised library of all audit information including units, processes, auditors, risks, controls, audit objectives, audit procedures and tests, template documents, standard findings etc.Increase audit coverage and effectiveness by simplifying and standardising your audit process. Embeds standards and provides documented evidence of methodology and results.
Import your audit objectives, audit procedures, audit tests, findings, project plans, etc. from Excel.Simplifies the setup and maintenance of your BarnOwl data.
Create audit plans.This allows you to plan your projects in advance.
BarnOwl audit is fully integrated with risk management to provide risk and control based auditing, compliance management and incident management for forensic auditing.Enables you to implement best practice risk and control based auditing and combined assurance. Ensures that risks & controls that matter to the organisation are independently audited and the results updated back into risk management.
Supports process and unit / site based auditing. Provides flexibility in the way you wish to audit. Audit a process/es across multiple sites and / or multiple processes per site/s.
Assign resources to audits, define their role (preparer, reviewer, sign off, close), tasks, planned hours and capture actual time spent.Assists with audit planning, ensures segregation of duties and safeguards sensitive data and allows you to manage and monitor your resources.
Advanced online / offline audit project synchronisation.

Synchronisation can either be done while online or via BarnOwl Transaction Files sent via email where connectivity is poor.
Enables auditors to work offline at remote sites with poor or no connectivity. You can synchronise from or to the central database on demand.
Check-in and check-out of audit tasks facilitates prepare, review and sign off.Drives the review process and prevents auditors from overwriting one another’s work.
System managed working papers.System managed working papers speed up, simplify and standardise your audit process and enable pre-defined findings to be raised automatically based on failed audit tests. BarnOwl audit is far more than just an ‘electronic filing cabinet’ for Excel working papers.
Automated import of management / auditee comments on findings. Simplifies and speeds up the audit finalisation process.
Action plan portal accessible to unlimited (internal) auditees.Enables auditees to update their action plans online. Drives management (auditee) accountability and proactive resolution of findings.
Follow-up audits. Monitor finding resolution and minimises repeat findings.
Integration to Voting to send out risk and control self-assessments (RCSAs) to auditees. Facilitates combined assurance.
Incident management integrated with internal audit.Enables full investigation audits to be conducted on incidents (e.g. burglaries, robberies, tip offs, forensics etc.)
Survey, checklist and questionnaires are integrated with audit.Enables online audit satisfaction surveys to be sent out to the auditees.
Extensive reporting capability including built-in reports, interactive Power BI dashboards, customised SSRS reports, favourite register views with export into Excel, custom query (SQL) extracts into Excel and MS Word integration.

  • Dashboards with drill down and export to Word / PowerPoint / PDF
  • Consolidated reporting for various stakeholders (e.g. management, audit committee, external auditors)
  • Word report builder to generate the final audit report
  • Global finding views and reporting
  • Combined assurance reporting
  • Root cause analysis
  • Significant findings by site by region
  • Follow-up audit rating improvement
  • Audit score benchmarking across sites
  • Action plan monitoring and reporting
  • Fully integrated to the BarnOwl data warehouse for data analytics and reporting with tools such as Excel, Power BI, etc.s
Produce the required reports for analysis and distribution.
Generate comprehensive audit reports in Word directly from BarnOwl at the click of a button.

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  • What is Internal Audit?

    The definition of Internal Auditing as per the IPPF framework is: “Internal auditing is an independent, objective assurance and consulting activity designed to add value and improve an organization’s operations.” It aids an organisation in achieving its goals by adopting an organised, disciplined approach to examining and improving the efficiency of the risk management, control, and governance processes.

    Principle 15 of the King IV code (copyright Institute of Directors Southern Africa) states that the governing body should ensure that the assurance services and functions enable an effective control environment, and that these support the integrity of information for internal decision-making and of the organisation’s external reports.

    The value of the Internal Audit function is becoming increasingly critical to the strong corporate governance, risk management, effective internal control, and efficient operations of any organisation. Internal audit provides several important services to company management, including managing risk, detecting and preventing fraud, testing internal control, and monitoring compliance with company policy and government regulation.

    Effective internal audit activities:

    • Assess the effectiveness of the design and execution of the system of internal control and risk management,

    • Assist management in the effective discharge of their duties,

    • Evaluate compliance with laws and regulations,

    • Evaluate the reliability and integrity of financial and operational information,

    • Provide recommendations for the improvement of operations,

    • Help safeguard company assets, including reputation and the utilisation of its resources,

    • Reduce the exposure to unpleasant surprises,

    • Save money as the cost of preventive actions is far less than those of corrective actions.

    • Play a leading role in facilitating combined assurance, eliminating silos across lines of defence, and ensuring that organisations communicate risk in a consistent voice.

  • What is Internal Audit software?

    Modern audit departments no longer carry out their audits using manual processes. Auditors carry out their audits using electronic systems, enabling results from audits to be analysed, transforming data into valuable business insights.

    The BarnOwl audit module is a highly configurable audit management solution that supports the entire internal audit life cycle of planning, execution, reporting, monitoring, and follow-ups enabling an organisation to simplify, streamline and standardise its internal audit processes.
    The BarnOwl audit module:

    • Incorporates built-in best practices and supports the adoption of the IIA standards,

    • Enables audit to increase audit coverage while reducing audit time and cost,

    • Facilitates risk & control-based auditing, ensuring that risks that matter to the organisation are audited and aligned back to the business,

    • Simplifies and standardises audit processes with centralised ‘working-paper’ library for all types of audit: risk & control, ad hoc, forensic, compliance, etc.,

    • Eliminates audit errors and inconsistencies by standardising the audit process and enabling centralised library look up,

    • Generates final and audit committee audit reports as well as advanced business intelligence dashboard reporting providing business insight,

    • Allows for online tracking and follow-up of audit findings via web-based action plans,

    • Supports working online and offline with advanced synchronisation ensuring 100% accessibility of the system.

    • Is fully integrated with risk management and compliance, providing enterprise-wide visibility of risk and combined assurance reporting.

  • Pros and Cons


    Allows businesses to:

    • Streamline your audit process, save time, achieve better results, integrate audit requirements all in one place

    • Dramatically reduce the amount of time and effort required in the planning, execution and reporting phases of your audits

    • Support true risk an control based auditing and combined assurance integration

    • Maintain standardised audit programmes in a central repository

    • Automate the monitoring and tracking of findings

    • Automate all audit-related tasks

    • Fly through quality assurance reviews by demonstrating a structured, systematic, audit approach in an audit management software solution

    • Drive process improvement

    • Generate reports and dashboards effortlessly

    • Transform your audit data into valuable business insight and foresight facilitating improved business decision making


    Some of the barriers to using audit software include:

    • Excel is easy to use and provides flexibility for users to capture data in almost any format they wish. No need to conform to a standard methodology, data validation, drop down boxes etc.

    • Many audit programmes are complicated and can only be done in Excel, however, these should all be attached to the relevant control and / or finding in a centralised audit management software solution

    • Keeping audit programmes up to date in a central library on a system is the best approach, however can be onerous and requires time and effort

    • No one likes completing timesheets, however, this is the only way to compare planned hours with actual hours.

    • Reports / dashboards generated by the software do not always meet business requirements and auditors often have to do much or their final audit reporting manually

    • Learning new software requires time and effort

    • Cost of software and ongoing support

Recommended Reading


6 Ways Risk-Based Auditing Adds Value to Your Organisation

BarnOwl Info Sharing Insight: Elevating Audit through Risk-Based Auditing with Continuous Monitoring with Anton Bouwer & Jonathan Crisp

Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?


BarnOwl Audit Management Datasheet

BarnOwl Mapping to the IPPF

BarnOwl GRC and Arbutus summary presentation 2023


Internal Audit Software Demonstration by BarnOwl

Risk Management Software | Audit Software | BarnOwl Software

BarnOwl Introduction

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GRCReady is the official provider of risk management content for the BarnOwl GRC software solution. GRCReady provides extensive risk libraries and risk maturity checklists/surveys which are integrated with BarnOwl.

GRCReady, based in Australia, offers a comprehensive and holistic library of products and associated services including templates, policies, procedures, guidelines, checklists etc. to help owners and directors of SMEs, startups and corporates to satisfy their corporate governance, risk management and regulatory compliance needs.

By integrating GRCReady's rich content libraries into BarnOwl's GRC software, we are able to offer our clients a state of the art, turnkey GRC solution.

GRCReady provides, arguably, the most comprehensive risk and governance maturity assessment framework with detailed steps and artefacts. BarnOwl's survey and action plan portal provides a simple and effective way to monitor and report on your current state of risk maturity and suggest and drive remedial action plans to take you to your desired state of risk and governance and maturity.

By integrating GRCReady's risk libraries with the BarnOwl GRC software, means that you don't have to start from scratch. In addition, ongoing updates and insights keep you informed and up-to-date on best practices.


Season Rhyrhm is BarnOwl's preferred partner in Botswana assisting with BarnOwl implementations, support services and client relationship management.

Season Rhythm is an established and distinguished player in the ICT sector in Botswana, specialising in a range of cutting-edge solutions. Season Rhythm leverages BarnOwl to provide tailored GRC&A services to businesses in Botswana facilitating:

  • Governance: Enabling organisations to establish and uphold effective governance structures, ensuring transparency and accountability in decision making processes.
  • Risk Management: Equipping businesses with tools to identify, assess and mitigate risks, safeguarding against potential threats and ensuring continuity in a business environment.
  • Compliance: Ensuring adherence to regulatory frameworks and industry standards, protecting businesses from non-compliance penalties and fostering trust among stakeholders.
  • Audit: Streamling the audit process with comprehensive tools for planning, execution and reporting, driving efficiency and accuracy in internal audit and compliance assessments.


BarnOwl works closely with NSA in the field of GRC and assurance.

NSA is an education and risk & assurance advisory services provider, consisting of a team of professional consultants and facilitators who have been hand-picked on experience and expertise. NSA services include:

  • Strategic intervention: 30 expert consultants facilitating strategic planning, combined assurance, effective governance and risk management assignments.
  • Continuous professional development: CPD training for internal auditors, external auditors, accountants, risk managers, government officials, and psychologists.
  • Online learning: accredited training for the local government sector, including the Municipal Financial Management Program and Supply Chain Management.
  • Online skills development: skills in demand for 2030, including cybersecurity, Protection of Personal Information, Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and programming.

BarnOwl and NSA work closely with our clients to align and enable best practice GRC and assurance framework & methodologies within BarnOwl. NSA regularly presents online information sharing sessions together with BarOwl.


Nico Technologies is BarnOwl's preferred partner in Malawi assisting with BarnOwl implementations, support services and client relationship management.

Nico Technologies Limited is an established IT products and services provider in Malawi, specialising in managed IT services, IT infrastructure services, IT project management, digital solutions, digital transformation and IT advisory.

Nico Technologies uses BarnOwl extensively within their own organisation to automate and manage their own risk and compliance functions.


Morgan Solus is BarnOwl's preferred business continuity specialist consulting firm with its 'BCM toolkit' software. BarnOwl GRC together with the BCM toolkit, provides a comprehensive risk management and BCM software solution.

Morgan Solus is a specialist consultancy firm focusing on risk, resilience and continuity. Morgan Solus's core services are centred on resilience, crisis management, business continuity (BCM), IT services continuity and disaster recovery (DRP) and training.

The BCM toolkit ensures a consistent approach to implementing BCM and IT disaster recover and cuts down implementation timelines by 60% whilst driving up successful outcomes.

BarnOwl's extensive GRC and assurance functionally coupled with Morgan Solus's BCM toolkit provide the ultimate risk management and BCM software solution.


Arbutus Analytics is Barnowl's preferred data analytics software. BarnOwl GRC integrated with Arbutus Analytics, provides the ultimate in continuous risk monitoring.

Arbutus Analyzer is a powerful data access and analysis solution specifically developed for auditors, business analysts, and fraud investigators. Its robust performance and user-friendly features offer you the ability to access and analyse data quickly and simply.

BarnOwl GRC, integrated with the real-time metrics from Arbutus provides a strategic early warning system driving preventative and predictive capability facilitating effective business decision making business improvement. with local sub-sahara African distributor


Barnowl works closely with Pax Resilience in the field of GRC and sustainability.

Pax Resilience offers solutions in risk, resilience and cyber security. Pax Resilience strive to create peace of mind by assisting you to build the resilience in your organisation so essential to survive and thrive in the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world we live in.

Pax Resilience regularly presents online information sharing sessions together with Barnowl.


Paige Law is the official provider of compliance content for the Barnowl GRC software solution. Paige Law provides an extensive Library of South African acts including provisions [CRMPs] and checklists which are integrated with Barnowl.

Paige Law specialises in compliance, Commercial Law, Legal process consultancy, managed legal services and POPIA/ GDPR.


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