Widen the scope of audit, says ACCA

The role of the auditor needs to be expanded to bring extra confidence for
company shareholders, according to ACCA.

The institute has held a series of roundtables with banks, auditors,
regulators and other stakeholders to discuss the future of audit and many want
to see a significantly enhanced role for auditors.

Risk management, corporate governance arrangements and financial assumptions
underlying the business model were some issues that some would like to see
brought within the scope of the audit.

One roundtable participant likened the audit report to the answer to Life,
the Universe and Everything from Douglas Adams’ Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
book – 42.

“Audit reports show an answer, but without letting the reader see the working
out behind the conclusion. This needs to change,” said Ian Welch, head of policy
at ACCA.

Other suggestions included the ability to provide assurance on real-time
information, improved communication with stake holders and the need to address
the issue of liability.

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