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The Control Matrix

19 January, 2016 - 12:35

The control matrix is a tool used to analyze a systems flowchart (and related narrative) to determine the control plans appropriate to that process and to relate those plans to the processes control goals. It establishes criteria to be used in evaluating a particular process. We’ll start by taking a look at the four essential elements of the matrix—control goals, recommended control plans, cell entries, and explanations of thecell entries. Then, we’ll elaborate on the steps used to prepare the matrix.

Figure 9.1 presents a “bare-bones” outline of the control matrix, and Figure 9.2 is the “annotated” flowchart produced as a by-product of completing the matrix. We explain how to annotate a flowchart later in this section. The intent in  Figure 9.1 is  not  to have you learn about the control goals and control plans for a cashreceipts process. Those are covered in  THE “ORDER-TO-CASH” PROCESS: PART II, REVENUE COLLECTION (RC) . Rather, we are trying to give you anoverview of the four control matrix elements and how they relate to each other, and to walk you through, in a very basic way, the steps in preparing the matrix. Please follow along in the figures as we describe how to prepare the control matrix.

Review Question

What are the four basic elements included in a control matrix?

Figure 9.1 Elements of the Control Matrix 
Figure 9.2 Causeway Company Annotated Systems Flowchart