Could better connectivity drive a more insightful audit?
The audit has become a digital process, bringing new challenges for auditors and the companies they work with.
Companies have experienced a massive increase in the data they gather and have invested in ways to derive value from it. They have also invested in enterprise resource planning (ERP) and other systems to make financial processes faster, more transparent and more harmonized. In turn, companies want their auditors to use this technology to drive value and to ask insightful questions about the data as they audit.
But this isn’t a straightforward process. Large companies may have disparate, legacy systems, which makes gathering the data difficult, and some data may not be available in a digital format at all. ERP systems help to address this, but companies are at different stages of maturity in implementing these. A related challenge is that companies may be reluctant to share their data with an auditor unless they have full confidence that it will be secure.
These companies, particularly multinationals, require a consistent audit approach, so that an audit in one location is the same as an audit in another. They also want faster and more integrated communications from their auditors. These demands led to another significant challenge: how can technology facilitate consistency, transparency and improved communication for companies during the audit process?
The questions that followed from these challenges were:
- How could EY technology increase connectivity?
- How could EY teams realize the potential of a connected digital audit through centralization, standardization and automation?
- How could faster communication be facilitated?