When the EC initiates an audit of – typically three – H2020 projects, its Common Audit Service sends to the grant beneficiary a letter of announcement (LoA) listing the grant agreements to be audited, contact details of the organisation which will carry out the audit, and a request that they prepare information specified in annexes to the letter before the beginning of the on-site audit. The annexes are:
• Annex I: Supporting documents before and during the audit (64 items)
• Annex II: Internal control questionnaire (122 items)
• Annex III: Detailed cost breakdown
(A different set of annexes is provided for Marie-Sklodowska Curie projects.)
Recently the EC has published these documents on their Funding & Tender Opportunities portal.
Comparing annexes I and II shows significant overlap. Sometimes one annex asks for more detail than the other. For example, one asks only for internal guidelines for time recording, while the other asks the frequency of use, the IT system used, whether all time is recorded or only that worked on H2020 projects, etc. In other cases, identical questions are asked, for example registration number, VAT status, organisation structure and conflict of interest.
Maybe an opportunity for simplification?