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Reader-oriented report writing for internal auditors

Fresenius Medical Care

Fresenius Medical Care (FME) is the world's largest integrated provider of products and services for individuals undergoing dialysis because of chronic kidney failure. The Global Internal Audit (GIA) department supports FME’s operations by ensuring that internal controls are effective throughout the organization and business processes are in line with internal and external standards. This is achieved through recommendations published in reports. These reports need to be clear, concise, consistent - and above all readable

The challenge

The Senior Vice President of GIA knew his auditors needed to be better equipped to write clear, concise, sensitive and readable audit reports. He was also looking to reduce the time required to edit and review the reports he received. He needed a level of professional consistency - but the diverse nationalities, background and experience of the auditors was making this a challenge.

Securing consistency in the Global Internal Audit department

We analyzed anonymized examples of FME’s internal audit reports. These examples were integrated into our seminar training material to ensure relevance and promote learning and transfer. After the seminar the learning continued. Anonymized live reports were sent to the trainer who reviewed them for accuracy and appropriacy of language, style and clarity. This coaching went beyond corrections and their reasons, to include hints and reflections on lessons learned. We then encouraged learner autonomy through self-editing and further coaching for those who needed more direct support.

 

There were 3 key elements in the seminar:

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Tailored training materials incorporating actual examples from FME reports helped the auditors see what could be improved and what could be achieved.
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A trainer with professional auditing credibility ensured the auditors understood why these improvements were necessary and how language patterns could impact their goals.

 

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Case studies and individual self-correction showed the auditors how to apply the learning in practice and fly solo.


The result

Since the training, FME has experienced three benefits:

  • The GIA team is better able to efficiently and independently write reports tailored to their readers’ needs.
  • The Senior Vice President spends less time reviewing and editing reports before they are distributed.
  • And ultimately, the department now delivers more consistent, readable reports that add even greater value to FME.
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