Assurance and internal audit

Assurance is something that can be:

  • provided – by making a positive declaration, based on credible evidence, that gives people confidence about your ability to do something, or
  • gained – by assessing something (like an activity, process or function) and verifying that it is working as intended.

A key tool businesses use to gain assurance (gathering credible information) is an ‘internal audit’, and you can also hear people referring to assurance this way.

In the Railways Act 2005(external link) (the Act), a core approach to assurance is in regard to safety assessments. It states that Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency must be able to “gain the appropriate assurances” that any assessed activities are safe and if not, determine the actions required so these assurances can be gained (Section 30(h)(iii)(external link)).

This section focuses on internal audits, given their critical importance to a strong assurance programme.

Print version: You can also download a print version of these guidelines [PDF, 1.7 MB]