Companies and non-profits utilize auditing services for examining the assertions that management and the board of directors make about the organization’s financial statements. Assertions can be exact claims made by management or assertions can be implied related to circumstances. As auditors, we are independent. We look at the source material to make sure the information projected in the financial statements is accurate. For example, we may make sure that the assets listed in the financial statements actually exist.
In the news and on television, we often hear about auditors uncovering fraudulent activities or failing to detect criminal activity. Generally, auditors do not look specifically for fraud unless the client instructs us to look for it. However, if we find fraud, we are obligated to report it as the law requires. In the majority of cases, we would be satisfied to report irregularities to management.
There are other auditing services available in addition to examining financial statements. Organizations will often employ auditors to examine the internal controls businesses use in order to catch mistakes. Internal controls is another term for “checks and balances” to make sure employees and contractors complete their work correctly and that documentation is present. For example, auditors run tests to see if the organization's staff catch errors. In our report, we may make recommendations for changes in job descriptions in order to ensure that work is properly completed and that the responsibilities for work assignments are evenly distributed. Many organizations may call these methods a “team approach”.
Auditing services help ensure that the most economical and smooth operations are in place for a variety of organizations. Auditing services include customizations that management may want in order to examine specific operation segments. For example, performance may have been suffering in a particular department over a period of time. Management may want an examination as to the cause and recommendations to alleviate their concerns. A practical examination may include tests, surveys, and interviews put together jointly by the auditors and management. As auditors, we issue reports incorporating the criteria set by management and the audit team.
Compliance audits test to make sure businesses are acting within the regulations set by industry standards or, in some instances, the government in order to pass inspections.