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4 ways audit solutions bolster quality control for accounting firms

When the leaders of top accounting firms speak, the profession takes notice. Recently, the CEOs of several prominent American accounting firms issued a statement addressing the future of the profession, the Journal of Accountancy reported. The statement describes the promise that accounting holds for those embarking on a career in the profession. From the profession, novice accountants have been promised an occupation with purpose since delivering a high-quality audit matters to a range of stakeholders in the economy.

Stakeholders trust the quality of audits because the profession boasts organizations, like the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), that set and ensure adherence to standards, the statement continues. A standard highlighted for its impact on audit quality mandates that accounting firms must have a system of quality control for their auditing practice. The purpose of a quality control system is to bestow firms with the confidence that their personnel are adhering to the appropriate professional standards as well as the firm’s own benchmarks for quality. The system of KPMG, whose CEO is one of the leaders behind the statement, closely reflects the PCAOB’s standard, with policy and procedures for performing audits with independence, integrity, and objectivity.

For confidence in engagement performance

Senior members of the profession invite firms to implement a system of quality control and ask accountants to consider how audit solutions bolster the implementation of quality control policies and procedures. Specifically, accountants can leverage audit solutions for confidence in their firm’s engagement performance, an element that the PCAOB has defined as integral to a system of quality control.

Integration

A qualified audit solution integrates your clients’ accounting records with the tools and practice aids needed to complete the audit. Having these tools readily available makes it easier to manage audit engagements and, as a result, make the most of the firm’s proficiency in delivering high-quality audits.

Optimization

To make it easier to proceed from the planning to the performance stage, look for a solution that assists with assembling the proper practice aids and documentation for the audit.

Assurance, facilitation, standardization

For a closer view of how an audit solution can assist with quality control for engagement performance, consider a specific task within the audit process: risk identification, assessment, and response. The right solution can provide assurance that the task has been thoroughly completed, facilitate the task’s documentation, and even present the opportunity for standardizing it, which is a crucial method for quality control.

When a risk is identified, effective solutions present the proper program for assessing and responding to it, then assist with carrying it out. With an audit tool, accountants will be able to link risks to client controls and audit procedures to facilitate risk reduction.

A qualified solution will streamline the preparation of writing management letters by making it easier to mark risks for inclusion in reports. What’s more, the optimal tool will automatically compile identified risks into a report.

Benefit from a solution that stores past risk assessments and responses in a library so that the firm can implement them in future audits. Standardizing risk assessment and response is not only advantageous for quality control, it’s an asset for efficiency.

Takeaway

Now knowing how audit solutions bolster the implementation of quality control policies and procedures, check out CaseWare Audit, a powerful tool for managing audit engagements. Click here to learn more about CaseWare’s Audit Solution.

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