07 Jun/12

Internal Audits: Saving Lives and Saving Money

mining translationIn April of 2010 an explosion rocked the Upper Big Branch Mine south of Charleston, WV. More than 1000 feet below the entrance to one of the biggest coal-producing mines in West Virginia, highly flammable methane had been ignited in a coal dust explosion that left 29 miners dead at the site. In the following months both the Mine Safety and Health Administration and the mine’s owner Massey Energy scrambled to shed light at what exactly caused the tragedy. After a more than 18 months long investigation, the government agency ruled in its final report that the explosion was ultimately the result of “unlawful policies and practices” that could have easily been prevented by more careful and comprehensive internal safety inspections thereby not only placing responsibility for the explosion on the mine’s parent company Massey Energy, but further indicting negligent “corporate culture as a root cause of the Upper Big Branch Mine disaster.”

While the above cited example is certainly an extreme case of corporate negligence and lack of appropriate oversight, the case certainly showcases the crucial importance of internal corporate control mechanisms and explains why more and more companies invest in an effective internal revision department. Internal audit departments and controllers can not only help to monitor and enforce safety regulations in such obviously hazardous industries such as mining, but also serve to develop proposals for the optimization of any other corporate environment; from oil drilling to software localization. It is therefore no surprise that a modern internal audit department often directly reports to a company’s upper management as their findings can, and often will, have crucial implications for a company’s ability to remain competitive while observing existing rules and regulations.

In a similar fashion as compliance departments both monitor the internal processes of a company and create an ethical foundation of corporate integrity and responsibility, internal revision departments function as mediators between corporate businesses and their external watchdogs. As a quality management system it not only safeguards the company from the unwelcome surprise of a lawsuit, but, by supporting external audits, also creates a transparent business practice that benefits companies, employees, and lawmakers. Similar to the very specific language of compliance communications, internal audit reports require the reader to be fluent in both industry specific terminology as well as legal jargon not in one but often multiple languages.

Whether you are seeking language experts who specialize in mining translations or need your internal audit revisions translated into different languages, we can help you navigate the world of internal revisions communications with our team of competent translators and language experts.

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