An audit is an in-depth and thorough review of all of a company or individual’s financial statements and books. The auditor performs this review and checks to make sure that all of the stated information is honest, correct, and accurate. With individuals, an audit is usually done in relation to income tax concerns or questions. A business is subject to audits of their own books at any time and they must file audited financial statements with the SEC if they have investors in the business who are stockholders. Audits are necessary to reassure present investors, attract new investors and to qualify for business loans and additional financial credits.
Auditors are accountants who have also earned designation as certified public accountants. CPAs have their choice of many jobs in the financial and accounting fields. A large number of these people will be hired for internal audit jobs.
Having an internal audit job, you will conduct an objective review and examination of the financial statements that have been compiled by a company. It is the responsibility of the auditor to make sure that all of the necessary information is included on the proper forms. He is then expected to make sure that the accounts are all listed correctly.
The auditor is giving his professional and personal word that he has inspected the information himself and has found it to be done correctly. Most prepared financial statements belonging to a large company must be placed before an auditor before they can be released or used.
There are also positions for outside or independent auditors. These people will also examine books and financial records for truthfulness and accuracy. These people are reviewing the work of all accountants or auditors who have certified the work prior to his involvement. An independent auditor will then issue written reports on what he finds and will deliver his opinion about whether the financial information is above board and fully disclosed.
These opinions may be called for if there is any question concerning internal auditing and accounting or they may be used as routine practice by a particular business. There are also cases where the courts or government will bring an outside auditor into a particularly uncomfortable situation.
To be an accountant or an auditor you need to be a very detail-oriented person. You should have good math skills and also have strong computer skills. A CPA designation is necessary to be an auditor and the testing process is extremely hard.
The number of people who pass when taking the CPA test for the first time may be well under 50%. You should have a bachelor’s degree and preferably a master’s degree in business or accounting in order to prepare yourself for a future as a top flight auditor. There are some accountants and auditors who have been hired with degrees in other fields, but they usually have compatible skills and experience in the field.
There are newer audit jobs available such as IT auditors. These employees are used by information technology companies or departments to develop usable audit plans for their information systems. They will assess safety and general adequacy of the internal computer controls in relation to privacy and security issues.
They also are charged with managing and making recommendations concerning any risk management concerns. IT auditors also have to be able to advise their company on any regulatory or compliance issues that occur. Superior computer skills and business management experience are necessary for these positions.
Premium audit jobs can be found with a number of insurance companies. They are used to study certain compensations that are paid out. Premium auditors will review and perform audits on workers’ compensation insurance policies to make sure that the classes and the exposures for policy holders are all in accordance with the company rules and regulations.
They will also review the business records of the employer to accurately determine what the class and premium of exposure is in relation to any claims that are presently being paid out. The exposure is a determination of the amount that the company itself was at fault for the accident that occurred. If there is a great deal of exposure noted the company will have its premiums increased.
These auditors will deal with the insured company on a personal basis and will assist them in understanding how the policy payments, rates, and calculations are all being determined. While a college, education is not specifically required for this job; a high school degree is necessary as well as former insurance experience and successful completion of APA courses with APC certification, or comparable certification such as CPCU. Premium auditors must work effectively under deadlines so that premiums adjustments can be accurately determined and assessed on companies that have workers’ compensation policies.