Opinion - Time to consider real people.
One of the major lessons to be learnt from the Maxwell affair is that, when it comes to auditing, it is not the interests of the client that should be uppermost in an auditor’s mind.
This is an increasingly tricky concept in these days when firms urge their staff to concentrate on customer service, cross-selling and billing targets.
Having Mirror pensioners or Equitable policyholders – or any ordinary person who suffers real hardship as a result of a business collapse – at the forefront of his or her mind will make any auditor more objective.
It is these real people who should be considered in the discussions on audit independence that arise from the Maxwell affair.