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«OFFICE OF AUDIT AND INVESTIGATION SERVICES Internal Audit of the UNFPA Global Programming System FINAL REPORT No IA/2016-02 11 March 2016 United ...»

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United Nations Population Fund

Delivering a world where every pregnancy is wanted, every childbirth

is safe and every young person’s potential is fulfilled.

OFFICE OF AUDIT AND INVESTIGATION SERVICES

Internal Audit of

the UNFPA

Global Programming System

FINAL REPORT

No IA/2016-02

11 March 2016

United Nations Population Fund – because everyone counts

INTERNAL AUDIT OF THE UNFPA GLOBAL PROGRAMMING SYSTEM

TABLE OF CONTENTS

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

I. OBJECTIVES, SCOPE, AND METHODOLOGY

III. DETAILED FINDINGS

A. APPLICATION CONTROLS

Good practices identified

Improvement areas identified

Segregate the ability to create, submit and approve workplans

Submit budget transactions to the Atlas KK module only after Head of Unit workplan approval

Promptly implement a system fix to ensure transaction dates are recorded for all workplan budget transactions

Promptly implement a fix for system errors leading to discrepancies between GPS and KK budgets

Disable the ability to modify system-generated workplans

Document the version and date and time of generation of GPS workplans

Periodically generate reports on potential exceptions that could affect the effectiveness of workplan management activities

Promote better workplan financial management through restricting the choice of accounts for workplan activity budgeting

B. USER ACCEPTANCE TESTING

Good practices identified

Improvement areas identified

Implement a mandatory sign-off for compliance with Internal Control Framework requirements for significant business applications development and implementation projects,

Sufficiently involve users from field offices in user acceptance testing

C. END-USER TRAINING AND SUPPORT

Good practices identified

Summary of survey results

D. GENERAL CONTROLS

Good practices identified

ANNEX 1

GLOSSARY

Report developed by Contractor under OAIS supervision

INTERNAL AUDIT OF THE UNFPA GLOBAL PROGRAMMING SYSTEM

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

1. The Office of Audit and Investigation Services (OAIS) of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) engaged Grant Thornton CJSC (“Grant Thornton” or “Contractor”) to perform, under OAIS’ general supervision, an internal audit of UNFPA’s Global Programming System (GPS).

Background

1. The GPS was implemented in November 2014 to enhance workplan management at UNFPA.

It supports the preparation, budgeting, approval, maintenance and system set-up of the workplans used by Headquarters units and field offices to plan and manage programme implementation activities.

Methodology and scope

2. The internal audit was performed by the Contractor, under Contract UNFPA/DNK/PSC/15/013, in accordance with the Information Systems Audit and Assurance Standards included in the Information Technology Assurance Framework issued by ISACA1, consistent with the applicable guidance and standards included in the International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing. The audit included reviewing and analyzing, on a test basis, information that provided the basis for the audit conclusions.

3. The audit covered the period from 25 November 2014, date on which the GPS was released into production, to 2 October 2015. The objective of the audit was to provide an independent assessment of (i) the design and operational effectiveness of processing procedures and internal controls established within GPS to ensure the integrity, accuracy, and completeness of workplan data; (ii) the sufficiency of the user acceptance testing process undertaken previous to releasing the application into production; (iii) the overall adequacy and sufficiency of training and support provided to GPS users throughout the period covered by the audit; and (iv) the general controls related to administrative and privileged access to GPS.

4. The Contractor’s work was limited to specific procedures and analysis as described in this report, and was based only on the information available as at 20 November 2015, date of completion of field audit work. Accordingly, changes in circumstances after this date could affect the findings outlined in this report.

This information has been prepared solely for the use and benefit of, and pursuant to a client relationship exclusively with the UNFPA under Contract No. UNFPA/DNK/PSC/15/013 dated 22 July 2015. The Contractor is not responsible for UNFPA judgments, decisions, or actions taken as a result of the analyses, findings, or recommendations contained in this report. The Contractor disclaims any contractual or other responsibility to third parties, based on its use, and, accordingly, this information may not be relied upon by any party other than UNFPA.

Audit rating

5. The internal audit assessed the internal controls in place over the GPS as ‘Partially Satisfactory’, which means that internal controls were adequately established and operating well but one or more issues were identified, as discussed in the ‘Detailed Findings’ section of the report, that may adversely affect the

–  –  –





design and operating effectiveness of internal controls and processing procedures within the GPS should

they not be addressed by Management. Ratings by key audit area are summarized in the following table:

–  –  –

Key findings and recommendations

6. The audit identified a number of significant enhancements to the workplan management process as a result of the implementation of the GPS, as well as several areas that require management attention, primarily related to the design of certain GPS application controls. Overall, the audit includes seven high and four medium priority recommendations designed to help management improve GPS controls. Of the 11 recommendations, 7 are of operational nature, 3 are of compliance nature and one refers to a strategic matter.

Enhancements to the workplan management process

7. Development of the GPS constitutes a key step towards enhancing workplan management at UNFPA. GPS provides the capabilities required to (i) enhance the workplan management process contributing to a more reliable preparation, budgeting, approval and maintenance of workplans, as well as their Atlas2 set-up; (ii) solve several long-standing programmatic and operational issues related to programme and workplan activity management; and (iii) address recurring workplan management issues identified by internal and external audits.

Application Controls

8. The ‘Partially Satisfactory’ rating in the area of Application controls is primarily a consequence of control design issues noted in the areas of (i) access to GPS functions; (ii) segregation of duties within the workplan development and maintenance process; (iii) workplan budget development and approval; and (iv) workplan generation. The audit noted that the ability to submit and approve workplans is not segregated and the approval of workplans is not restricted to management roles. GPS workplan budgets can be submitted to the Atlas Commitment Control module3 without prior management approval. Further, system-generated workplans lack time-stamping and version controls and can be edited after they are generated.

User acceptance testing

9. The user acceptance testing was, in general, effectively performed. The ‘Partially Satisfactory’ rating assigned to this audit area reflects a strategic matter related to the lack of a sign-off process to enforce compliance of new business applications with the requirements of the UNFPA Internal Control

–  –  –

10. The ‘Satisfactory’ rating assigned to this audit area reflects a well-organized and timely training effort as well as an effective user support and incident management process.

–  –  –

11. The ‘Satisfactory’ rating assigned to this area reflects proper restrictions over system administrators and privileged user access, as well as proper logging and tracing of GPS administrator access.

Management response

12. Management would like to thank OAIS and the auditor for the report, and appreciate the findings and recommendations. Recommendations will be implemented as indicated below, mainly as further enhancements to the system. Implementation of some of the recommendations will require further strategic decisions on the best way to proceed with the GPS and the workplan management process.

13. The internal audit team would like to thank the management and staff of the Programme Division, the Finance Branch and the Management Information Services Branch for their cooperation and assistance throughout the internal audit.

–  –  –

I. OBJECTIVES, SCOPE, AND METHODOLOGY

2. The internal audit assessed the internal controls in place in the GPS in the period from 25 November 2014, date at which the GPS was released into production, to 05 October 2015.

3. The internal audit was performed by the Contractor, under Contract UNFPA/DNK/PSC/15/013, in accordance with the Information Systems Audit and Assurance Standards included in the Information Technology Assurance Framework issued by ISACA, consistent with the applicable guidance and standards included in the International Standards for the Professional Practice of Internal Auditing. The audit included reviewing and analyzing, on a test basis, information that provided the basis for the audit conclusions. No audit opinion or attestation is provided as a result of the internal audit.

4. The objective of the audit was to provide an independent assessment of (i) the design and operational effectiveness of processing procedures and internal controls established within GPS to ensure the integrity, accuracy, and completeness of workplan data; (ii) the sufficiency of the user acceptance testing process undertaken previous to releasing the application into production; (iii) the overall adequacy and sufficiency of training and support provided to GPS users throughout the period covered by the audit;

and (iv) the general controls related to administrative and privileged access to GPS.

5. Audit procedures performed as part of the audit included (ii) the review of available GPS procedures and related control documentation; (ii) a walkthrough of the end-to-end GPS workplan preparation, creation, maintenance, submission and approval process; (iii) interviews with personnel responsible for the development and implementation of the GPS, including relevant GPS and Cognos3 reports; user acceptance testing activities; and end-user training and support activities; (iv) the analysis and reconciliation of workplan data extracted from GPS, Cognos and other sources; (v) a survey of GPS users regarding their experience using the GPS, training received and user support effectiveness; (vi) the review of GPS related service desk tickets and incidents; (vii) re-performance of GPS processing functions, such as the submission of workplan budget transactions to the Atlas Commitment Control (KK) module;

and (viii) the review of restricted access and segregation of duties controls implemented within GPS.

6. Data provided to the internal audit team for the performance of the aforementioned procedures was not verified or audited except as considered necessary to complete the audit.

7. The internal audit team comprised one Contractor professional with subject matter expertise and by OAIS internal auditors. The engagement started on 31 August 2015, with field work completed on-site at UNFPA’s Headquarters in the period from 14 September to 5 October 2015, and follow-up work on issues identified by the audit performed through 20 November 2015. Findings and recommendations resulting from the audit were first discussed with the Programme Division (PD), the Finance Branch (FB) of the Division for Management Services and the Management Information Services Branch (MIS) on 6 October 2015 and at a formal exit conference with representatives of the above business units held on 30 November 2015, upon completion of all required follow-up audit work. A draft report was submitted to management on 9 December 2015, and a final management response was finalized between 19 January and 2 March 2016.

–  –  –

II. BACKGROUND The GPS, built as an add-on functionality layer over the Atlas Grants module4, was developed 8.

internally to support the preparation, budgeting, approval, maintenance and system set-up of workplans used by Headquarters units and field offices to manage programme implementation activities.

9. Development of the GPS commenced in January 2013. Functionality developed as part of Phase I of the project was released into production on 25 November 2014. Four bundles5 of software patches, adjustments and functionality improvements were subsequently released into production throughout the period under review. A second phase of the GPS project was already under way at the time of issuance of the audit report, primarily to introduce additional functionalities for the management and processing of Funding Authorization and Certificate of Expenditure (FACE)6 forms and the management of workplan and programme cycle output progress reporting.

10. UNFPA uses workplans, typically annual, to support the planning, implementation and monitoring of the programme activities that contribute to achieving its programme results, as outlined in individual Country Programme Action Plans, Global or Regional Interventions Action Plans or other planning instruments. Programme activities can be implemented directly by UNFPA or by implementing partners (government agencies, non-governmental organizations or other UN organizations) engaged for that purpose.



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