Supply Chain Resilience and Security: Harnessing the Potential of Internal Audit

Supply Chain Resilience and Security: Harnessing the Potential of Internal Audit
  • Provide assurance and assess the potential risks posed by supply chain disruption

  • Learn how internal auditors can help their organisations build more resilient, secure and diverse supply chains

  • Reducing your exposure to risk and increase your ability to respond to unexpected events

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The resilience and security of supply chains have emerged as a major concern for organisations. The COVID-19 pandemic exposed the vulnerabilities of supply chain systems disrupting the flow of essential goods. The war in Ukraine and ensuing sanctions against Russia further strained supply chains, restricting access to raw materials such as grain and gas, and causing inflationary pressures. Geopolitical tensions between China and the West have added further supply chain anxieties, with tensions in the South China Sea raising concerns about disruptions to global shipping lanes and trade. The Suez Canal blockage in 2021 is a perfect example of the fragility of global supply networks and the importance of contingency planning and supply chain resilience and security strategies.

These events and others like them have compelled organisations to seek strategies to make their supply chain more resilient and secure. Addressing these supply chain challenges requires a multifaceted approach. This is where internal audit can bring value as the assurance provided by the function can help aid the organisation’s ability to withstand unforeseen supply chain disruptions. In an increasingly uncertain world where the next big crisis could always be around the corner, internal audit’s ability to provide assurance and assess the potential risks posed by supply chain disruption is a valuable skill set to possess.

This report explores how internal auditors can help their organisations build more resilient, secure and diverse supply chains, reducing their exposure to risk and increasing their ability to respond to unexpected events. This report looks to explore three key themes relating to supply chain resilience and security. Firstly, we investigate how organisations identify and manage supply chain risks and how internal audit can help improve this process. Secondly, the report examines what strategies organisations and internal audit teams can deploy to tackle the risks in the supply chain. Finally, we explore how organisations and internal audit can use collaboration tools and leverage technology to reduce and mitigate the impacts of supply chain risks. These themes encompass risk management, diversification and onshoring strategies, collaboration with suppliers, and the strategic use of technology and data analytics.

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