External Audit

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The CEO asks — do our numbers reflect the right information? Are we playing by the rules? Investors ask — can we rely on the financial performance as characterized by this company and this CEO? Regulators around the world ask — can you help us confirm that our financial playing fields are level and our markets are safe? Where will they turn?

They’ll turn to you, when you join the EY External Audit team. Our professionals not only have an eye for detail but also a strong grasp of the big picture. You’ll access our clients’ inner workings in tandem with your analytical skills and curiosity to better understand the business behind and beyond the numbers. You’ll ask questions and test assumptions with clients through your audit work, helping to ultimately provide an opinion on financial statements that investors will rely on.

Click on the questions below to learn more.

What would my day be like in External Audit?

Our External Audit professionals examine a company's financial statements and attest to their reasonableness. This includes taking time to understand the business and assessing key processes and systems used to produce the financial statements. It also involves understanding the ins and outs of business drivers, associated risks and their potential effect on financial statement accounts.

You might:

  • Work on a variety of clients from small businesses to multinational corporations, for both public and private clients in a variety of industries
  • Contribute to the understanding of the business and its associated risks
  • Learn about the key financial and system processes
  • Contribute to reports and schedules the team will deliver to clients and third parties
  • Attend meetings with key contacts at the clients where we share our findings
  • Be in charge of auditing certain accounts, liaising with clients to obtain the information and explanations needed to support your team’s audit opinion
  • Receive on-the-job coaching and mentoring from experienced members of the firm

What kind of projects or engagements would I work on?

You will be working in a demanding enviornment on behalf of a dynamic set of clients, across a broad array of industries and geographies. In External Audit, you’ll benefit from a variety of experiences, working on projects that could include such diverse activities as:

  • Testing the internal controls of a professional sports team by delving into their payroll process
  • Helping to bring vision to reality by assisting the entrepreneurs from a high-tech start-up as they navigate the reporting requirements of the initial public offering (IPO) process
  • Watching commercials at local television stations to ensure compliance with advertising contracts
  • Meeting with company executives to understand their process around identifying and handling fraud

What general business skills would I acquire in my first few years?

You’ll acquire general skills and knowledge such as:

  • Client relationship and networking skills
  • Organizational, time management and self-management skills
  • Teamwork and coaching skills
  • Communication skills, including report writing, questioning and basic presentation skills
  • Research and analysis skills, including how to verify, challenge and interpret information used to create financial statements or other business data

What assurance-specific skills and knowledge would I learn in my first few years?

As challenging as it all sounds, don’t worry; you’ll be supported all the way. In our External Audit practice, we take a direct interest in you and your career. For example, you’ll be placed on projects intended to develop and complement your specific skills, where you’ll work closely with more experienced colleagues from different levels and specialties. You can even supplement your on-the-job auditing experiences through a vast menu of our award-winning formal and self-directed live and web-based learning programs. And you’ll always be supported through extensive coaching and counseling.

Through these experiences and learning programs, you’ll acquire the following skills and knowledge:

  • Familiarity with IFRS, local GAAP and local regulatory requirements
  • An in-depth understanding of auditing and internal controls, including how to document processes and test controls that are in place
  • Understanding of how IT impacts processes
  • Comprehension of the significance of the Financial Statement Close Process on external audit engagements
  • Knowledge of financial performance and measurement concepts relating to reviewing business plans, analytical reviews and the valuation and testing of financial instruments
  • The ability to determine when to involve advisors from other service lines in the team, and the skill to interpret their findings and conclusions in order to deliver value to the client
  • Familiarity with fraud risks and methods for preventing them
  • Understanding of GAMx, our state-of-the art advanced audit support tool

What opportunities would Assurance Services open up?

You could:

  • Pursue a particular industry within Assurance Services and develop your reputation as a key advisor in that field
  • Take responsibility for supervising a team
  • Take a leadership role on our largest accounts, acting as a point of contact between our client and the wider global organization of EY
  • Work with a variety of audit clients and non-audit clients across different industries
  • Make a major contribution to the development of our people through training, coaching or recruiting
  • Explore opportunities to rotate or transfer to other service lines and locations – both national and global

And that's just the beginning. You may start your career in Audit, then down the road, use the knowledge and experience you’ve acquired to find the professional path that means the most to you. The truth is, Audit can become your gateway to an incredible career.

What requirements do I need to start?

For such a vital role we play in society and business, integrity is a given. But, we’re also looking for intelligent, motivated, creative thinkers with superior analytical, communication and leadership skills. Undergraduate or graduate degrees in accounting and CA-eligible candidates are required.

Bring your business smarts and personal integrity into play to help maintain public confidence in the world’s capital markets, one company at a time. So when you’re ready to make a difference, at EY, we have the people, clients, resources, training and support that will make it happen for you.