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2020 Internal Controls Survey

What do Belgian corporates think of internal controls?

The goal of the 2020 Internal Controls survey was to provide quantitative insights into the way Belgian organisations are dealing with their internal controls and measuring how COVID-19 impacts the internal control function. Moreover, the survey sought obtaining qualitative insights about the state of the organisation’s internal control culture.

Our survey covered the following seven areas

Internal control mindset

Control design

Digital enablement of the internal controls

Internal control maturity


Risk assesment

Reporting tools

Belgian organisations understand the importance of internal controls

Many large companies have non-formal processes, which can lead to systems that are not as efficient as hoped for. We're glad to say, given the niche topic of the survey, and the small country we live in, that Belgian organisations do understand the importance of internal controls.

In total, 76% of the respondents perceive internal controls as valuable but feel that not all levels in the organisation are proactively participating in the internal control journey.

Man pushing chess piece

Impact of COVID 19 on the internal control mindset?

No, I do not expect a change in mindset at all. COVID-19 will not have an influence

Yes, I do expect a change in mindset in favour of the internal control topic

Yes, I have experienced / do expect a change in mindset in disadvantage of the internal control topic

Internal control mindset and COVID-19 

51% of respondents don't expect a change in mindset, due to COVID-19, on the overall internal control mindset. However, companies are looking for creative ways to build a more positive perception around internal controls. 

Besides the common choices of internal control training or communications campaign explaining the added value, 16% considered gamification as an efficient way of keeping internal controls high on the agenda.

Small steps are being taken towards a future-proof internal control function. A future-proof internal control framework is one that connects to other functions in the company, one that gives full attention to automation opportunities by using the technology available on the market (like process mining, robotic process automation, data visualisation, etc.). 

One aspect must not be forgotten when dealing with internal controls: the human element. Make sure you have a compelling story ready that promotes the added value of internal controls in all parts of the company. 

The marketing and communication function combined with the internal control function can form powerful pathways to establish the internal control programme. In these times of crisis, having a strong corporate identity and a transparent story truly makes a difference. Companies that succeed in creating trust with the outside world will also be the most attractive to shareholders and consumers.

Internal control mindset and COVID-19

Which digital upskilling initiatives has your organisation taken since COVID-19 in terms of internal controls

Moves from physical signature to digital signatures
Improved system access controls
Data analytics initiatives to obtain better internal control insights: dashboards, process mining, ...
Robotic process automation: preparation of repetitive tasks

Contact us

Kristin De Rudder

Kristin De Rudder

Senior Manager, PwC Belgium

Tel: +32 492 74 39 76

Wim Rymen

Wim Rymen

Partner, PwC Belgium

Tel: +32 473 26 92 27

Connect with PwC Belgium