Key Themes

We have recently released the results of our annual Audit leadership survey which highlighted key themes on Chief Auditor’s agendas:

  • Data & Analytics: This was highlighted as the top challenge facing audit functions for 2020, superseding regulatory response, digitization and talent acquisition. Success in leveraging data analytics is becoming a definitive metric in assessing an audit functions effectiveness, and effects of COVID-19 will further highlight this. As c-suite leaders make critical business decisions, audits ability to swiftly critique MI becomes increasingly important. Three quarters of respondents also expected either marginal, substantial or exceptional growth of their data analytics headcount this year, suggesting they were sub optimally prepared for increased data analytics requirements at a time like this.
  • Technology Assurance: Now that technology is increasingly intertwined with business functions, this has significantly elevated its importance in recent years and as such, audit leaders and respondents again highlighted technology audit as a hiring priority for 2020. Chief Auditors will have already invested in technology talent that will be critical during enforced remote working where infrastructure and networks are stretched. Cyber security was selected as third hiring priority behind data analytics, which given the emergence of collaboration tools such as Zoom, will likely remain an area in which to strengthen over the coming period.
  • Remote Working: Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, only 16% of respondents felt flexible working would have a negative impact on their work, which given current remote working requirements, should have positioned audit functions to remain operational and effective. Three quarters of respondents also suggest that under 15% of their functions have been offshored or near shored, protecting audit against some of the challenges now faced by large captive sites, particularly in Asia. Anecdotal information since the crisis began suggests the biggest challenge for Chief Auditors is stakeholder engagement, due to remote working.
  • Agile: The effectiveness of agile was far from clear at the beginning of 2020; only 38% of respondents had adopted agile and 37% saw real time risk assessment as having a significant effect on their work. However the impact of COVID-19 has demonstrably increased stakeholders need for immediate information and those firms that embraced agile methodology are well prepared for this adjustment. This necessary change may well embed agile methodology in standard audit practices for the future.

Key Audit Moves: Q2 2020


  • Maria Vercoe-Rogers moves internally at AIB to become Head of Group Internal Audit. She was previously Group Chief Compliance Officer and Head of Risk Assurance.
  • Bernadine Burnell joins London Stock Exchange as Chief Internal Auditor from TP ICAP where she was also Chief Internal Auditor.
  • Mark Pointer is promoted to become Chief Internal Auditor at TP ICAP. He was previously Head of Audit, Corporate and EMEA.
  • Miguel Orue-Echebarria moves internally at Vodafone to become Group Audit Director. He was previously CFO, Vodafone Spain


  • Alexandra Shirey Brooks joins Hertz as Chief Audit Executive from Aptiv where she was Vice President of Internal Audit.
  • Bill Chippendale joins Discover Financial Services as Chief Audit Executive from West Thomas & Co, where he was a Strategic Advisor.
  • Todd Holmes is appointed Chief Audit Executive of Assurant, where he was previously VP of Internal Audit Services.
  • Nathan Herman joins Wells Fargo as Chief Control Executive from Huntington National Bank, where he was previously Chief Audit Executive.


  • Jason Ho joins Blue Insurance as Head of Internal Audit. He was previously Audit Manager at HSBC.
  • Michael Silitonga joins Grab as Head of Internal Audit. He was previously Director, Head of APAC Business Processing Services Risk & Control at Credit Suisse.
  • Angel Gu joins I-Mab Biopharma as Head of Internal Audit & Internal Control. She was previously Compliance Director, Greater China, South East Asia and Korea.
  • Geraldine Tan joins SGX as Head of Internal Audit. She was previously Associate Partner, Cyber Security, Risk Advisory Services at Ernst & Young.
  • Yuanyuan Shi joins Siemens Gamesaas Head of Internal Control, APAC & Australia. She was previously Senior Manager at PwC.
  • Mark Copley joins Standard Chartered as Head of Audit, Technology Services, he is based in Singapore. He was previously Global Head of Technology Risk at Macquarie Group in Sydney

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