The control environment provides an atmosphere in which people conduct their activities and carry out their control responsibilities. It is the foundation for all other components of internal control, providing discipline and structure.
This questionnaire template provides a number of COSO elements and the related control objectives for entity-level controls. Within the questionnaire, you can document whether the control exists, whether it was designed properly, related test procedures, and management's action plan for deficiencies. This document should be used as a general guide to use when creating an entity-level controls questionnaire. It does not address all controls that could be assessed during this process. Subscribers are encouraged to customize the questionnaire so that it reflects specific company practices and business operations.
Example control objectives in this tool include:
- A code of conduct and other policies exist regarding acceptable business practices, conflicts of interest or expected standards of ethical and moral behavior.
- Employees clearly understand what behavior is acceptable and unacceptable under the company's code of conduct and know what to do when they encounter improper behavior.
- There is an established "tone-at-the-top," including explicit guidance about what is right and wrong. This tone is communicated and practiced by executives and management throughout the organization. Executives and management continually demonstrate, through words and actions, a commitment to high ethical standards.