It takes courage to encourage your stakeholders to bring in an external auditor/assurer and have the spotlight shone into all the nooks and crannies of your project. It is so difficult to contain the frustration of having to divert resource to compile comprehensive documentation the reviewer inevitably requires whilst keeping the delivery on track. And then there are so many questions and sometimes mis-understandings that result from being an outsider to the project. Over the years I have had a number of my programmes audited and I have concluded that we have really benefitted from this process 50% of the time whilst the other 50% has been a tick box exercise by people who just don’t seem to get what the project is really about or the context in which it is being delivered or who are simply serving their ‘Will we get our bill paid?’ objective. It feels rare to find a truly challenging ally who really knows how to undertake a professional assurance audit and who really helps the programme or project manager rather than adding to their burden of work.
What’s your experience been? Have you been involved in an audit and how did it help you?