WORKING SUCCESSFULLY WITH AUDITORS
Working successfully with auditors can be a challenging but important part of ensuring the financial health and compliance of your organisation. A successful audit requires cooperation and effective communication between the auditors and the audited organisation. This article explores some best practices for working with auditors to ensure a smooth and successful audit experience.
1. Preparation is key: The first step in working successfully with auditors is preparation. Ensure that all necessary financial records, documents, and information are easily accessible and organised. The auditor will need to review a significant amount of information, and having everything ready and in order will save time and reduce the risk of errors or oversights.
2. Communication is essential: Effective communication is critical to a successful audit. Auditors need to be able to rely on the information they receive from the organisation, so it is important to be transparent and open in your communications. This includes providing clear and accurate answers to their questions and promptly addressing any concerns they may have. It is also important to establish regular check-ins with the auditor to ensure that everything is on track and that any issues are addressed in a timely manner.
3. Be proactive: It is important to be proactive and take steps to address any potential issues before the auditor finds them. This may involve conducting internal audits or reviewing processes and procedures to ensure that they are in compliance with relevant regulations and standards. By proactively identifying and addressing any potential issues, you can reduce the risk of surprises during the actual audit and demonstrate your commitment to compliance and financial health.
4. Be flexible and responsive: Auditors may need to make changes to their plans and schedules, and it is important to be flexible and responsive in these situations. For example, they may need to review additional records or request additional information. By being willing to accommodate these requests and providing the information they need in a timely manner, you can help to ensure that the audit proceeds smoothly and that the results are accurate and complete.
5. Provide clear and detailed explanations: When the auditor asks for information or clarification on a particular issue, it is important to provide clear and detailed explanations. This helps to ensure that they have a complete understanding of the situation and that the information they receive is accurate and complete.
6. Keep the focus on the goal: It is important to keep the focus on the goal of the audit, which is to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the financial information. This means that it is important to avoid getting bogged down in arguments or disputes over minor details. Instead, focus on finding practical solutions and working together to resolve any issues.
In conclusion, working with auditors can be a complex and challenging process, but by following these best practices, you can help to ensure a smooth and successful audit experience. By being prepared, communicating effectively, being proactive, flexible and responsive, providing clear explanations and keeping the focus on the goal, you can help to ensure the financial health and compliance of your organisation and build a positive relationship with your auditor.
A list of the major UK auditing firms can be seen here: https://www.accountancyage.com/rankings/top-5050-accountancy-firms-2017-10/#:~:text=PwC%2C%20Deloitte%2C%20EY%2C%20KPMG,in%20the%20UK%20accountancy%20industry.
A list of mid tier accountancy firms can be seen here: https://www.accountancyage.com/rankings/mid-tier-power-index-2022/