Auditing, as one of the most common accounting career paths, plays an important role in any organisation, whether it is public or private. An auditor is a cross between a detective and an accountant. Auditors enjoy accounting work that includes some investigative work. They are in charge of examining a company’s financial statements for accuracy and writing a report at the end of their investigation. This process is called an audit.
The process of objectively collecting and reviewing the accounts or financial statements of a government undertaking, department, private sector, or other organisation based on defined standards is known as auditing. To put it another way, auditing is the method of examining, analysing, and evaluating operations, products, programmes, structures, organisations, and staff.
Although auditing is primarily concerned with financial data, it can also include the review of non-financial records that reveal details regarding a company’s operations. They also make recommendations for increased compliance and better organisational policies in addition to controlling a company’s finances. Auditors may play a variety of roles in organisations, from tax law specialists to internal resources auditing professionals. Regardless of what area they are a part of, all auditors are vital to the financial health of organizations.
Types of auditors
- Internal auditors
Internal auditors are employed by individual corporations, government bodies or other entities. Internal auditors work for the organisation they audit.Their role is to ensure that the company operates smoothly and efficiently. For the employer, they conduct accounting, internal control, and compliance audits. External auditors ensure that their company’s internal control are working properly and check for frauds, mismanagements or waste. Sometimes they also help the external auditors with the financial statement audit.
- External auditors
They are also known as Independent Auditors or Professional accountants in public practice. They are usually self-employed. An External Auditor audits financial statements for companies and other organizations and give advice in preparing income tax returns. They also provide guidance in matters such as compensation and healthcare benefits for employees.
- Government auditors
Government auditors are employed by local and provincial governments in the public sector. Government auditors maintain and review government reports, as well as auditing private companies and entities whose operations are regulated or taxed by the government. The primary role of government auditors is to provide verification during compliance and operational audits.
- Forensic auditors
Forensic accounting may be another specialisation for auditors. Information to be used for legal assistance is often discovered by forensic auditors. The aim of forensic auditors is to track, prosecute, and prevent fraud and other white-collar crimes. Forensic auditors are often employee’s of corporations, government agencies and investigative and consulting services firms.
Nature of work
Internal auditors work in offices as part of a company’s staff, and will perform audits for all the various departments while external auditors run yearly audits, for government offices or outside firms. Most auditors work full time and overtime hours are typical at certain times of the year, such as during tax season.
Auditors typically have the following duties:
- Checking and analysing reports and data
- Examining company accounts and financial control systems
- Weighing levels of financial risk within organisations
- Checking that financial reports and records are accurate and reliable
- Ensuring that assets are safeguarded
- Identifying if and where things are not working as they should and give advice on what changes to make
- Preparing reports, commentaries and financial statements
- Presenting findings and recommendations to management
- Ensuring procedures, policies, legislation and regulations are correctly followed and complied with
- Undertaking reviews of wages.
Scope of auditing
As the economy grows, so does the need for auditors to ensure the accuracy of financial accounting records and financial reporting in both the private and public sectors. An auditor can succeed if they have strong mathematical and problem-solving abilities. Companies that are registered under the Companies Act must be audited every year, so the need of auditor is always there. Auditors’ jobs have never been simpler thanks to new software technologies. With the help of technologies, data storage and documents are now simple to test. Auditors usually have job versatility, which allows them to transition from internal auditing to public accounting or from management accounting to internal auditing. Internal auditors can get managerial positions as well due to their control on business.
How to become an auditor
There are routes into a career in audit for both university graduates and after intermediate, though routes differ depending on whether you are aiming for internal or external audit. External auditors must first qualify as chartered accountants with a professional accounting body. Achieving qualifications can take three to five years but you will work while studying. Internal auditors do not have to qualify as accountants, though it could be helpful. Graduates can have a degree in any discipline but subjects such as accountancy, economics and IT are particularly beneficial. After intermediate, students can enter the profession by starting as a trainee auditor and completing on-the-job training in order to progress.
When an auditor first begins their career, they usually serve under the direction of a more experienced auditor. They will be able to act independently after they have gained some experience. A trained experienced auditor may work for the government, public sector undertakings, or in the private sector on a lucrative assignment. Auditors can also be professors at colleges and universities.
Following is the list of better colleges of Accounting all over Pakistan:
- Institute of business administration
- College of Financial & Management Sciences (CFMS)
- National College of Business & Management Sciences (NCBMS)
- Islamabad College of Accounts & Finance (IsCAF)
- SKANS School of Accountancy
- College of Commerce Professionals (CCP)
- Professionals’ College of Accountancy (PCA)
- Mentors – The Accounting Academy (MAA), Karachi
- School of Business Studies (SBS), Karachi
- College of Accounting and Management Sciences (CAMS), Karachi
- Al Hamd Academy, Hyderabad
- Khyber College of Sciences (KCS), Peshawar
- Professionals’ Academy of Commerce, Peshawar (PAC-P), Peshawar
For more details on programs https://www.eduvision.edu.pk/programs-offered-in-commerce-finance-accounting-at–level-in-pakistan
You may get jobs in public and private sector in the following areas:
- Book-keeping, accounting and auditing clerks
- Budget analysts
- Financial analysts
- Financial managers
- Personal advisors
- Instructors and lecturers
- Tax examiner and collects
- Revenue agents
- Attention to detail
- A strong aptitude for maths and accounting
- Excellent problem-solving skills
- A keen interest in the financial system
- Ability to work to deadlines, under pressure
- Ability to work on your own initiative and as part of a team
- Computer and IT skills
- Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
- Presentation skills
- Documentation skills