Optimising financial processes

Posted on:

How Does Control Improve Speed and Business Performance?


“Why do cars have brakes?”

“To help them go faster!”

At first sight, I agree, it’s counter-intuitive. But I have it on good authority that Formula One races are won or lost at the corners, where the brakes together with the skill of the driver combine to help the leader get ahead.

Power without control is rarely a good thing in any context.

Jonathan Marks and Michael Mainardi have written a brief, but powerful, summary of how to identify, design and operate internal controls for business performance.

Internal controls should be built into, and not onto, business processes

You can read the article here ..  a 5 minute read, but its worth sharing with your own teams and risk and performance stakeholders, and keeping as a reference.

I haven’t seen such succinct and balanced guidance elsewhere. If you are a stakeholder in business and process performance and / or risk management, internal controls or compliance, it is worth a read.

Effective internal control, like the brakes on the car, are designed to achieve maximum performance without mishaps.

We all know the popular misconceptions about internal controls being the enemy of “getting things done”, and maybe we have all been a little bit guilty of perpetuating them with the occasional policy or control that doesn’t hit the mark.

They discuss the enemies of internal controls – the ‘human factor’, time, judgement, workarounds, mitigations, incentives and performance measures.

There is also an excellent diagram of the “Enterprise Risk Resilient Ecosystem”, that is based on the IIA’s “Three Lines” model, but I suspect gives further cause for thought.

You can access the article here ..  

Thanks for reading.