The Future of Auditing is Now



The impact of a global pandemic is a far reaching, deep-rooted thing. Gone are the days of maybe-we-will, maybe-we-won’t approaches to technology adoption, as business shutdowns and face-to-face business interaction introduced a firestorm to those still wary about modern solutions. COVID forced the hand of many firms and practitioners into virtual meetings, electronic signatures, cloud storage, delivery and client data collection and, according to CPA Practice Advisor, reverting from those adoptions is a non-option if they want to remain competitive1.

Perhaps no other sector of the profession has felt this upheaval more keenly than auditing. For example, how does one take physical inventory when being physically present is physically impossible? How does one continue to lower audit risk when body language (90% of communication) is absent from discussions with key stakeholders within a given client’s organization? It is now more important than ever to be able to dedicate time focusing on client services, which is why tech adoption will continue to play such an important role in the transformation of auditing.

According to Accounting Today, there are four major considerations for the road ahead including internal assessments. When thinking about services, it is important to analyze the strengths and weaknesses of your current offerings. Making a plan to build the competencies among your team in regard to data analytics and other modern skillsets might need to become a priority in order to stay apace of current adoption trends.

To make good on the results of that assessment, however, you will also need to convince stakeholders of the value in upskilling and reorganizing the way your practice or firm thinks about technology and the services you provide. This starts with your own staff. Accounting Today reports, “You’ll need internal champions. You must set up a detailed training program. And you’ll need clear communication plans, both for your staff and your clients, to explain the coming changes and the new value proposition behind these moves2.”

Changes like these take time and patience, and even if you do manage to get buy-in from decision makers, implementing new technology is not as simple as downloading and installing. Integration and training will also play a role and leaders will need to have realistic expectations in regard to how much time (and money) those endeavors are going to take.

Gearing up for the technological audit renaissance will take some finesse and a not a little preparation. The MICPA is working toward building resources to help auditors and auditing firms understand the transition ahead and how to embrace technology in ways that make sense. Keep an eye out for upcoming CPE opportunities on this emerging topic and more.

  1. Kepczyk, Roman. “2021 IT Predictions and 2020 Results.” CPA Practice Advisor. 4 Dec. 2020. Accessed on 17 Dec. 2020.
  2. Asgeirsson, Erik. “The Future of Auditing is coming Faster Than You Think.” Accounting Today. 7 Dec. 2020. Accessed on 17 Dec. 2020.

Source: MICPA

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