An auditor performs an audit based on a company’s financial statements to provide reasonable assurance whether the financials prepared are presented fairly and are free from material misstatements caused by error or fraud.Nature of the job
An external audit, which is a legal requirement, is carried out by a third party organisations such as the Big Four. This audit which is conducted annually requires the role of auditors who review the financial information, procedures and transactions within a company to ensure that the presentation of the company’s results are ‘true and fair’.
For entry-level graduates, the majority of your time will be spent in a client’s office, analysing and checking if the financial data is accurate or complete through a series of audit programmes and questionnaires. As you gain more experience, you not only have to ensure that the client’s accounts are prepared accurately but also identify areas where improvements can be made. In certain cases, you may need to challenge the validity of your client’s assumptions and recommend adjustments if there is a discrepancy in an accounting treatment.
Other types of assurance roles being undertaken include the due diligence of the financials of the company that is going through a corporate exercise such as IPO or M&A.
Auditors often work late into the night, especially around the year end cycle which occurs from January to April. The job also requires a certain amount of repetitive tasks that seem mundane to most. Regardless, this does not detract from the fact that the learning curve is steep as there is a lot of training and learning on the job. You will also have the opportunity to audit a variety of companies located across the country and even abroad. Imagine auditing a large drinks manufacturer one day and an aeronautical company the next or, for the ladies, doing a stock-take on a major cosmetics company!
Career Progress: Auditor > Supervising Senior Auditor > Audit Manager > Associate Director > Partner