Understand the NDIS Audit Process in 6 Steps
The audit process for NDIS registration and renewal can be daunting. There isn’t much information available to service providers to help guide them.
Here are some tips to help ease your path through the audit process.
1. Understanding verification vs certification
This is perhaps the most important aspect of understanding the audit process. Whether you’ll be required to gain verification or certification comes down:
- to the type of organisation you’re registering as and
- the registration groups you are applying for.
The major differences between the two are cost and the type of audit you will receive:
verification starts at around $500 and is an off-site audit; and
- certification pricing starts at around $3,000 and the audit is on-site.
Verification and certification are required once every three years, with a smaller audit conducted every year.
If you aren’t in a major city and require an on-site audit (certification), be prepared to pay the travel cost of getting the auditor out to you.
2. Don’t present bigger than you are
The online NDIS application requires you to answer questions predicting the size of your organisation. The answers you give to these questions will affect the cost of your audit. The more participants you predict your business will offer supports to, the more the auditors are going to charge you for your audit. Whilst you must make realistic estimates of participant numbers, overestimating the future size of your business is going to cost you more during the audit.
3. Get the best quote
There are currently eight auditors auditing for the NDIS renewal and registration process. They are private businesses and there can be major differences in pricing between each of them.
During the past few months there have been some horror stories from sole traders and small organisations who have received cost prohibitive quotes from auditors.
Obtain quotes from at least three auditors and choose the company that offers you the best value. They are all auditing based on the same criteria, so there is really no difference between them except price and availability.
Also keep in mind that as a business expense, the cost of the audit is tax deductible.
There is currently a backlog of service providers waiting for their registration or renewal audit. There are lots of service providers trying to renew or register for the first time and only eight audit companies available to audit nationwide. The overload of work for the auditors has led to long wait times for service providers.
Start your registration or renewal ASAP and when you receive your scope of audit back, start looking for an auditor.
Whether you’re completing an off-site or an on-site audit, make sure you and your organisation are prepared. Knowing and understanding your policies and procedures is a necessary aspect of running your business and the auditors want to see that you will implement them appropriately. This is especially important if you are completing an on-site audit as you and your employees will be asked questions relating to your policies and processes.
6. During audit, be ready to react to any “findings”
Non-conformities in your policies and procedures may be found by the auditor. They will send you feedback on what you will need to change or update in order to pass your audit.
The audit process can be an overwhelming experience. Every organisation is different and there are many factors you must consider.
These top tips have been written by Centro ASSIST - who specialise in taking the confusion and hard work out of the registration and renewal process for service providers. Offering tools and resources to get you registered and remain compliant for the life of your business. Centro ASSIST even offers referrals to two of the approved auditors who offer their customers a discount.