What types of final documents do you issue?

Financial Audit Reports

Our two main financial audit reports are mandated by State and/or federal laws. They are:

      State of Michigan Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
      Statewide Single Audit

Financial audits are designed to provide reasonable assurance about whether the financial statements and/or schedules of an entity are presented fairly and in all material respects according to generally accepted accounting principles.

Performance Audit Reports

      Most of our discretionary, non-mandated, audit hours each year are focused on performance auditing.
      We conduct performance audits based on the potential for improving the effectiveness and efficiency of State government operations.

Follow-Up Reports

      We will perform limited audit testing to determine if previous performance audit report findings were addressed by an agency.

Preliminary Survey Summaries

      If the results of a preliminary survey do not identify significant potential opportunities for improvements and/or risks of deficiencies that could impair management’s ability to operate a program effectively or efficiently, we may discontinue the audit and release a summary report of our preliminary survey.

How do you determine your audit plan?

We develop our audit plan using an approach based on assessments of risk and opportunities for improvement.

We focus audit efforts on the activities identified through a preliminary survey, which we believe have the greatest probability for needing improvement and/or the most significant consequences if proper execution does not occur.

Auditing identifies where and how improvements can be made; therefore, audit reports are written on an exception basis. Stated another way, we typically do not continue audits if the program appears to function as intended; our resources are more impact-driven if we focus on areas for improvement.

How does an audit progress?

Generally, we conduct audits in three main phases:


    Planning
      The planning phase sets the foundation for the audit and includes conducting a preliminary survey, brainstorming, conducting research, developing audit objectives and scope, setting the audit’s timeframe, and many other activities. In this phase, we will:
      Review organization structure
      Review applicable State and Federal laws
      Research legislation impacting the audited program.
      Understand how the auditee strives to reach its mission, goals, policies, and procedures. Review agency-produced reports.
      Identify relevant criteria to audit against, such as best practices, benchmarks, audits of similar entities and from other states, and

    Audit Fieldwork

      This phase begins the strategic audit activities. During fieldwork, we will:
      Interview agency personnel
      Sample and analyze data
      Issue surveys if applicable
      Validate evidence
      Determine materiality of potential findings
      Communicate with the agency
      Issue draft audit findings

    Report Preparation

      This is the final stage. At this time, we:
      Draft the preliminary report
      Ensure compliance with auditing standards
      Ensure compliance with internal quality standards
      Provide agency with draft report
      Obtain the agency preliminary response
      Meet with the agency to address their concerns
      Finalize the report
      Release the report

How does an agency respond to your recommendations?

    Initial response

      In each report containing performance audit findings, we include an initial agency response where they indicate if they agree or don’t agree with the finding and when they plan to comply with the recommendation(s).

    Corrective Action Plans

      By State law, an agency is required to submit their plan to comply with the audit recommendations to the State Budget Office, Internal Audit Services, within 60 days of the release of an audit report. Once SBO reviews the plan for completeness, they forward it to us for informational purposes. We upload them to our website as an entry under the corresponding audit report.

What professional standards do you have?

Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards issued by the Comptroller General of the United States.
Generally Accepted Auditing Standards issued by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

What is your authority for audit?

Michigan Constitution, Article IV, Section 53.
Michigan Compiled Laws, Section 13.101.
Michigan Compiled Laws, Section 18.1470.
Federal Single Audit Act

Is Office of the Auditor General audited?

Yes, we are subject to a triennial peer review required by Government Auditing Standards. The peer review is performed by a six-person National State Auditors Association external quality control review team. We have received ten consecutive clean opinions. This is the highest level of opinion.
We are included in the required annual financial report of the Legislature