Why Should Independent Assurance Matter?
Public concern for the environment, a demand for fairer working conditions, tightening global trade laws and increased freedom of information are some of the factors that have seen the growth in environmental and sustainability reporting.
External stakeholders can view Environmental and sustainability reports with a degree of cynicism unless an assurance engagement concludes that the information contained in the report is accurate and there are no misstatements. The output, being an Independent Sustainability Assurance Report will provide a confidence to report users.
Without independent assurance your company may reduce the value and investment your company has made with environmental and sustainability initiatives and reporting. EnviroSense can add value by bringing a qualified external perspective as well as providing assurance performed to the International Standard for Assurance Engagements (ISAE) 3000 for non financial information.
How We Can Help
Prior to performing any assurance engagement, a practitioner should fully understand the scope of the exercise, the significance of the assessment and risk and therefore where time and efforts should be allocated to ensure the assessment is performed correctly and a conclusion can be made.
Attestation engagements (ISAE 3000) are routinely performed by EnviroSense that are specifically in the environmental and sustainability sector. It is our opinion that auditors must have a high-degree of subject specific experience coupled with years of auditing experience to:
• Identify risk and fundament misstatements, this is particularly important with reference to solid biomass, biogas or bioliquid audits as part of the RHI and RO obligations (see webpages)
• Identify appropriate sampling rates of information
• Conduct any interviews necessary in a professional and cooperative manner
• Understand the value of working with clients to get the best out of the engagement
• Use time effectively and not ask the wrong, unrelated questions or spend time trying to orientate oneself with the company, subject and operations
An initial conversation followed by a meeting to review the scope of the exercise is recommended and often necessary to essentially plan the engagement unless the subject matter and operations of the company in question are particularly familiar to the auditors. The initial planning exercise reviews what information will be required to be verified by the auditor, persons to contact and work with and in-turn, if the activities can be performed within one location or if additional visits to other sites are required and if a person in a specific field of expertise is required.
This meeting and planning exercise will be conducted free of charge as this serves to familiarise your company with the auditors of EnviroSense and for EnviroSense to plan the engagement correctly. The planning will also include the necessary internal controls and review conducted by EnviroSense and if there may be any conflicts of interest.
Please do contact us with any questions you may have or should you wish to discuss a potential engagement: