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Showing posts from March, 2008

fired from public accounting?

This is to address a posted question here..."do people ever get fired or let go from Big 4and for what reasons?"

Fired -
Yes, people do get fired, and this is pretty much for the same reasons anyone gets fired from a company. Wrongdoings, Extended unexplained absences, etc. I know of a person who got fired for being "caught in the act" at work. If I were to go into it in detail, this would turn into an adult entertainment blog. Another kid got fired for complete disrespect of authority. And there are quite a few other instances that led to different firings at the big 4.

Layoffs -
Now this is where it gets interesting. For my firm for example, it really depends on the region. In some regions, there are a decent amount of clients and the firms are desperate for people, like in the east coast of the US. In some regions, like the southern states, layoffs have occured due to a lack of enough clientele to keep them busy through the year. The new term that hr uses nowadays i…

materiality

Apparently what the client deem to be material is the threshold we should use for our materiality. To defend them, I guess it's understandable that our materiality would be so low at times, and small amounts to them could potentially be big numbers to us. But that's why we're much better off working with clients who had public accounting experience, and thus know what materiality means. No wonder public accountants are in such demand these days.

Prior year?

Me - this is what you need to do

client - well..umm...this is what we did last year...so it has to be right

I'm sure a majority of us have heard this terrible excuse by now. Some of the answers we hear from our clients are absolutely amazing. I really dont understand how some people can get to certain higher positions in a company. It just boggles me that people who are not qualified enough (I wouldnt go so far as to say incompetent) get to positions that influence a company's financials, public or private.

I feel like sending out a reminder email every day saying "Your G/L is NOT our support"
I don't care if you give me a hundred g/l printouts, it will not help.

It looks like once people get out of public accounting firms, they might have a hard time adjusting to cultures that might be fun but just not strong on the smarts/experience front.
But then again, maybe that's an advantage.

On the flip side, we can look at auditors who just do what was done last year. Gra…

client questions

Was just doing my taxes and came across a line other Other Income asking the following...to paraphrase...this is where you declare "Embezzled or other income from illegal activities"

Right, because if I did embezzle or get income from other illegal activities, I'd want to tell the government so, and not just that, I'd pay taxes on it.

Although we do have such questions on our checklists for clients, I don't think i've ever heard of anyone get an answer that said..yep, i saw fraud.

What would make more sense is if these questions were aimed at the non-VPs and officers, to the lower/middle rungs of the totem pole, where will people will be more willing to reveal information anonymously. How about a public accounting hotline..where anyone in a company can dial their auditor anonymously to report any unethical activity? Now that just might work sometimes.