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Audit Principal (equivalent to Assistant Manager)

National Audit Office
London (Greater) (GB)
£54,735 - £65,146
Closing date
27 Jul 2022

View more

Public sector and government
Salary band
£50,000 - £60,000, £60,000 - £70,000
Contract type
Full Time, Part Time
Where will they be working?

Job Details

The role of public sector auditors has never mattered more. To support our strategic ambitions we are looking for Audit Principals (the equivalent of an Assistant Manager at most firms) who want to make a real difference - leading and motivating financial audit teams to deliver audit work that is both high quality and delivers insight to help improve public services.

Who are we?

As the UK’s independent public spending watchdog we support Parliament in holding government to account. We improve public services through our high-quality audits. In challenging times, it remains vital that Parliament is well supported in scrutinising the performance of government - and rarely have there been more challenging times.

Whilst we deliver our financial audit work in the same way as an audit firm, our position is unique. Our work is extraordinarily influential. Our work auditing nearly £2 trillion of public expenditure and income gives us great insight into how government manages its money. Our ambition is to make greater use of this insight to help improve the management of public finances and risks to delivering public services.

“Recently, the findings from the financial audit I was working on were discussed at a Parliamentary Select Committee. It was really rewarding to see my work making an impact and contributing to improving public services”.

Our people

Our people are proud to be part of our diverse, inclusive and healthy workplace. We attract talented people and are committed to supporting them to become even better at what they do, enhancing their careers and ensuring they have the skills and capabilities they need. We welcome applications from individuals from all backgrounds; we value the ideas, energy and diversity this brings us. We would particularly welcome applications from female and BAME candidates.

What is the role?

Our Audit Principals lead our most complex engagements and manage our smaller engagements to deliver a portfolio of work which leads to the certification of our clients’ annual reports and accounts. They deliver high quality and cutting-edge audit work to international auditing standards. Their insights and the value they add not only benefits the bodies they audit directly but also informs our other work – including our value-for-money studies and investigations. Key responsibilities of the role include.

• Working in accordance with the NAO’s values and championing our diversity and inclusion.
• Demonstrating a strong commitment to their own self development, to delivering the NAO’s strategic objectives,
and keeping themselves up to date on office initiatives and information relevant to their work and specialism.
• Demonstrating an ability to balance tasks and priorities to lead a complex, challenging portfolio of work including
supporting the work and development of others.
• Using their technical knowledge and ability to manage tasks and projects to deliver high quality work across our
financial audit practice.
• Using professional judgement and scepticism to assess the quality and validity of audit evidence and challenge
where greater assurance is needed.
• Collaborating internally and externally to both offer and access expertise from across the office and to use our
knowledge to create greater impact.
• Contributing to the development of our approach to financial audit, supporting improvements in our audit
methodology, audit software, use of financial data, and operational working practices.
• Influencing and adding value by building their understanding and insight into the challenges and perspectives of
their clients.
• Complying with corporate responsibilities and support others to do so.

“I enjoy the variety of work – during my time at the NAO, my work has included reviewing complex financial instruments in the Treasury, auditing national museums and galleries, and getting to grips with large infrastructure projects at the Department for Transport. This has given me the opportunity to develop my skills and experience as well as keeping my work interesting and varied – no two audits are the same!” Robert

Key skills for the role

Our people strive for excellence, act with courage and integrity, are curious and seek to learn, all while being inclusive and respectful.

Essential skills and experiences for the role are:

• Experience of IFRS and international standards on auditing.
• Relevant financial qualification (CCAB) with recent post-qualification experience in leading external audit
• Exceptional project management skills, able to deliver high quality audit work while protecting the welfare of your
• A proactive approach to problem solving and relationship building to maximise the influence of our work with
government bodies and other stakeholders.
• Collaborative, engages well with colleagues at all levels, and invests in their development and the wider success of
the organisation.
• The ability to lead, develop and motivate diverse teams and support all colleagues to deliver great work and achieve
their potential.

Desirable skills and experience for the role are:

• Experience of public sector or charity audits.
• Experience in implementing and embedding transformational change in financial audit methodologies, software and
use of data.
• Working in a Centre of Expertise that provides assurance over complex transactions and balances.
• Experience in supporting a firm’s second and third line of defence work to improve the quality of their work.
• Auditing Shared Service or complex IT environments.


The National Audit Office (NAO) is the UK’s independent public spending watchdog.

We support Parliament in holding government to account and we help improve public services through our high-quality audits.

We are independent of government and the civil service. The Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG), Gareth Davies, leads the NAO. He is an officer of the House of Commons with statutory authority to:

  • audit and report on the financial accounts of all government departments and other public bodies
  • examine and report on the value for money of how public money has been spent. ​

The Public Accounts Commission (TPAC), a parliamentary committee of MPs, oversees our work.

Read more about the governance of the NAO.

We have an ambitious five-year strategy from 2020 to 2025. Its aim is to improve our support to Parliament in examining public sector performance, provide more practical recommendations that lead to better outcomes, and share more of our independent insight. Read more about our recent impacts in our Annual Report and Accounts 2022-23.

Company info
0207 798 7227
157 – 197 Buckingham Palace Road
United Kingdom

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