Correcting the mistakes or changing policies will improve financial reporting, operational efficiency, and result in a smoother audit. Failure to address the audit findings may result in business operations disruptions and delay the issuance of the audited financial statements.
Tips for Addressing Outstanding Audit Issues
Every company is unique with different audit issues to correct. Issues in can include internal control recommendations or reasons why audit adjustments occurred. As you analyze the needed changes, consider the following tips to help your company resolve outstanding audit issues.
- Do Not Delay
After the audit, your first impulse may be to set aside the findings to review at a later time. Do not delay in reading and addressing the findings. Implementing small changes in the company may be an easy process. Start reviewing the audit issues to fix and implement changes.
- Implement Corrective Action Procedures
From implementing new recording policies to incorporating financial statements with needed details, implement corrective action procedures as soon as possible. First, devise a plan for the necessary changes to fix outstanding audit issues. Second, implement the corrective action procedures into the company.
- Professional Help
If you fail to understand the audit findings or do not know the right changes to implement, consult your auditor to discuss. An existing partnership with your accounting firm is ideal. The firm will have extensive knowledge in the daily operations of your business and recommendations help overall operating efficiency.
- Set Benchmarks
In order to ensure the correction of the audit issues, set a benchmark or specific timeframe for implementing the changes. The timeframe allows you to analyze changes in the data. Reviewing the data is a test. Implementing the correct policies is only the first step in the process. As owner or company representative, you need to know if the changes are correcting the issues.
- Analyze the Data
After you reach the benchmark point, analyze the data for effectiveness and make further changes if necessary.
- Continue Monitoring
Even if the changes correct the outstanding audit findings, you will need to continue monitoring. Begin by setting another benchmark. Checking the data again ensures that changes are working in a positive manner.
- Share Findings
As you work through the auditing issues, fill the senior management team, board of directors or owner in on the ongoing process. Using the team approach may provide insight into fixing the issues.
- Follow Up on the Changes
Under most circumstances, as time moves forward, you will find from your monitoring that the outstanding audit issues have been corrected. After an allotted amount of time, you should check back again to see that the changes are still running in a smooth and efficient manner.
After receiving information on outstanding audit issues and implementing changes, remember to analyze and monitor data and to adjust your changes as needed.
At Ernst Wintter & Associates LLP, we provide comprehensive audit, review, examination and compilation services as well as tax services that fit your business needs. Our professionals have specific expertise in the financial services industry, nonprofit sector, and employee benefit plan audit requirements. Please contact us today.