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September 22, 2023

Compensation Watch ’19: Internal Auditors

Ah, internal auditors. The “guardians of trust,” as Institute of Internal Auditors President and CEO Richard Chambers likes to call you. So how much money do “guardians of trust” make these days? Let’s take a look at the latest salary data from Randstad, Robert Half, and Accounting Principals.


Randstad organizes non-executive accounting and finance positions in its salary guide by entry-level (one year of experience), mid-level (five years of experience), and senior-level (10 years of experience). Executive titles are listed by interquartile ranges across three levels of company revenue: small ($50 million), mid ($100 million), and large ($250 million or more).

Randstad has salary ranges for four internal audit positions in its 2019 guide (two non-executive and two executive):

Internal auditor

  • Entry-level: $54,898 – $65,832
  • Mid-level: $67,789 – $81,290
  • Senior-level: $79,857 – $95,762

Internal audit manager

  • Entry-level: $93,093 – $114,352
  • Mid-level: $106,823 – $131,217
  • Senior-level: $122,293 – $150,220

Director of internal audit

  • Small: $111,163 – $148,529
  • Mid: $118,055 – $157,737
  • Large: $125,079 – $167,123

Vice president of internal audit

  • Small: $137,280 – $183,425
  • Mid: $145,313 – $194,158
  • Large: $152,474 – $203,727

Robert Half

Robert Half reports starting pay ranges by four percentiles in its salary guide: 25th (little experience), 50th (average experience), 75th (above-average experience), and 95th (significant experience and expertise).

Salary figures represent the national averages; however, bonuses, benefits, and other forms of compensation aren’t factored into the salary ranges, according to the guide.

Bob’s got salary ranges for five different internal audit positions in its salary guide:

Internal auditor (up to one year)

  • 25th: $38,250
  • 50th: $46,250
  • 75th: $55,000
  • 95th: $71,500

Internal auditor (one to three years)

  • 25th: $58,250
  • 50th: $71,000
  • 75th: $84,250
  • 95th: $95,000

Senior internal auditor

  • 25th: $75,000
  • 50th: $87,250
  • 75th: $105,000
  • 95th: $120,250

Internal audit manager

  • 25th: $96,750
  • 50th: $112,750
  • 75th: $134,500
  • 95th: $157,500

Chief audit executive/vice president of internal audit/director of internal audit

  • 25th: $127,750
  • 50th: $179,250
  • 75th: $213,000
  • 95th: $285,000

Accounting Principals

Accounting Principals’ salary guide has got both salaries and total cash compensation figures. The data in the guide is broken into three categories: average base salary by company size (small, medium, and large; base salary (low, high, and average); and total cash compensation (low, high, and average).

Accounting Principals also has salary information for five positions within internal audit. But instead of me writing out three categories worth of salary information for five different IA positions, hopefully this table from Accounting Principals’ guide is more useful and less confusing:

So IA folks, are you being paid what you’re worth, or not so much? Feel free to bitch or brag below.

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