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Internal Controls Best Practices

Internal Controls  Best Practices

Internal control practices enable TCNJ to achieve its objectives while maintaining an environment that focuses on ethics and accountability. Establishing an ethical environment at all levels of the organization is the most important element of accountability and control.

Effective control activities can help your department identifies priorities, achieve department goals, report reliably, meet compliance regulations, and safeguard the college’s resources.  Departments can benefit by:

  • Reducing and preventing errors in a cost-effective manner
  • Ensuring priority issues are identified and addressed
  • Protecting employees
  • Providing appropriate checks and balances


Four keys to great internal control practices:

  1. Separation of duties: Divide responsibilities between different people so one individual doesn’t control all aspects of a transaction.
  2. Authorization and approvals: Be sure that only a person with delegated authority approves or authorizes transactions.
  3. Security of assets: Safely secure equipment, cash, inventory, and resources. Reduce the risk of unauthorized use. Count periodically and compare with amounts shown on control records.
  4. Review and reconciliation: Regularly examine transaction records against official college records to verify accuracy, appropriateness, and proper compliance.