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Auditing Culture: Audit Project Surveys

Online Exclusives ​James Roth Reid, PhD, CIA, CCSA, CRMA Nov 01, 2019

Responses to employee questionnaires can yield valuable insights on the cultural environment.

​Internal auditors looking to gauge organizational culture can choose from a variety of assessment techniques. Some are innovative, robust, and resource-intensive, while others are fairly simple. Typically, using a combination of techniques provides a more well-rounded picture of the culture.

Some of the most commonly used assessment techniques include:

  • Entitywide employee surveys.
  • Open-ended interviews.
  • Structured interviews, in which a sample of employees is asked the same set of questions.
  • Combining objective data with auditors' perceptions.
  • Focus groups.
  • Self-assessment workshops.
  • In-depth root cause analysis.

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​James Roth Reid, PhD, CIA, CCSA, CRMA

James Roth Reid is president of AuditTrends LLC in Hastings, Minn., and author of Best Practices: Evaluating the Corporate Culture. He received Internal Auditor’s John B. Thurston award for the article, “How to Audit Culture” and conducts the seminar, Auditing Culture: Challenges and Proven Techniques for The IIA.