Financial Statement Audits in a Post-COVID World
The COVID-19 pandemic has significantly impacted the way professional service firms interact with and deliver services to their clients. Early in the pandemic, CPAs and other professional service providers had to quickly pivot and learn how to collaborate with clients in a mostly virtual environment. While physical restrictions have been easing, the lessons learned in the sudden switch to a virtual service delivery model have brought remote auditing to the forefront and with it, the efficiencies that CPA firms can continue to leverage in a post-COVID world.
While remote auditing is not a new concept, advancements in technology have provided auditors the ability to collaborate with clients and execute audit procedures from almost anywhere. CPA firms that heavily invested in available technologies such as electronic work paper storage, file exchange tools and collaboration applications such as Zoom and Teams were, by and large, able to successfully deliver on audit and compliance services on a remote basis without significant impact to delivery timelines. Below are five examples of how auditing has adapted to the COVID-19 environment, which is anticipated to continue and evolve in the post-COVID world.
The pandemic has taught us new and innovative ways to execute audit services more efficiently while still delivering a high-quality product. While there will always be a need for some live interaction, especially given that professional services are a relationship-based profession, the lessons learned from mandated physical distancing will continue on into the future as CPA firms focus on continuously improving the audit process and move toward providing value-added advisory services to their clients.
Kristian R. Barr?>
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