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How do I view auditors now?

When I was in Public, I always noticed that the toughest ones to deal with where the individuals with Big 4 experience - they thought they knew everything and so decided to tell us how audits should really be done and what we really need to get it done - i.e. a lot of what we were asking was superfluous.

When I first started - I certainly felt more sympathy towards the auditors than the rest of my group, and was very nice to them, helping them along the way. Now, I've switched gears -and I am now the kind of person who tells the auditors what they don't really need and that it's a waste of time. I'm well aware of this switch - and I can't help it. For the most part, auditor questions don't really add value (was aware of this on the other side too) so I don't really care much for it and either ask them to go to someone else or tell them why it's irrelevant. You sometimes expose the auditors too - by challenging them on why they need certain things. If it's the usual "because we received it last year" or "it's in our procedures", we tend to go after them so they don't repeat this again. There's always 1-2 people on every audit team that knows what they're doing, and those are the individuals who add value - since they can help you conclude on an accounting issue.

Where do I stand now? I don't really like wasting time dealing with them, but when I get requests/questions, I'm happy to give them what they need to get them to their conclusions - even if it's a painful request, with the caveat being that I understand why they need it. If I don't believe it's necessary, then I'm in the mood for an argument as long as it saves me time on the back-end. I do believe that there is some value to audit - I just don't want to be wasting my time on the non value-add part.


Anonymous said…
If you don't mind me asking. What position in public did you depart from and what position do you currently hold in private?
Dale Roxas said…
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dale Roxas said…
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Anonymous said…
Hi again, Sir. Thanks for keeping the blog updated.
I guess it might be a little weird for you to be “on the other side” after many years in public accounting. But at least you understand the work of auditors, why they are asking all that information and what it is to be used for (at least in most of the cases).
Good luck with your new job and….beware of the auditors, man!!! 
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