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Audit and Assurance

The audit, assurance and internal audit area has information and guidance on technical and practical matters in relation to these three areas of practice. There are links to events, publications, technical help and audit representations.

In this section

Audit exemption

Guidance on the exemption requirements for reporting periods beginning on and after 1 January 2016.

Appointment and engagement terms

Access practical resources on client acceptance, auditor appointment and agreeing engagement terms to help understand auditors’ responsibilities and the requirements of International Standards on Auditing (ISAs), in particular, ISA 210. These resources include practical support to help auditors deal with the challenges that may arise.

Supporting audit quality

Guidance and support for auditors and practices on conducting audits, quality management, risk assessment and professional judgement, as well as information on regulation and standards.

Risk alert for new audit tenders

As ICAEW registered auditors will be aware, in response to changes in the audit market, the growth of challenger firms and some more complex audits moving away from the largest audit firms, we have increased our activities to monitor the audits undertaken across firms registered for audit with ICAEW.

Audit and technology

Digital tools are helping audit to evolve in a data-heavy, fast-moving corporate world. Innovative analytical and artificial intelligence tools are transforming audit, enabling auditors to be more collaborative and provide greater insights in real time.

What is assurance?

Discover what assurance means, what can trigger the need for assurance, what an assurance engagement is and what assurance mapping is.

What can assurance cover?

Information on the variety of assurance options open to organisations - ranging from those exempt from mandatory audit requirements to those seeking assurance on non-financial business information.

The nine stages of an assurance engagement

Assurance engagements can be typically broken up into nine stages. Not all stages will be clearly separated and identifiable in every engagement. Some stages, such as the engagement letter, may not be required during internal assurance, while others, such as the problem-solving phase, may not be necessary in some external engagements.

Standards and guidance

A comprehensive list of standards and guidance covering external assurance engagements. Find out which standards apply for engagements by subject area, as well as information on individual standards and the practical application of guidance to assurance engagements.

How to audit change

Change is a feature of doing business, but managing it successfully can be complex. This guide outlines how internal audit can help project managers implement changes by adopting good practices throughout the project life cycle.

How to audit the cloud

Cloud computing is transforming business IT services, but it also poses significant risks that need to be planned for. This practical guide for internal audits outlines how they should assess risk management.

Regulation and working in audit

Working in the regulated area of audit

Firms working in the regulated area of audit are required to comply with the Audit Regulations and guidance. On this page, you'll find links to advice and guidance to help your firm remain compliant.

Local public audit in England

ICAEW is responsible for the licensing, registering and monitoring of auditors who wish to carry out audits of local public bodies. This page explains what accountancy firms and individuals need to do to become a registered local auditor under the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014.

Auditor liability

Auditor Limited Liability Agreements (LLA) are contracts designed to ensure that auditors are not pursued for excessive losses, just a reasonable proportion based on their responsibility.

Audit Monitoring Report 2022/23

A key part of our role as an improvement regulator is to provide help and support to our firms, ensuring you have the tools and resources to help your firm maintain the expected standards. Access our latest Audit Monitoring Report, a valuable resource for firms regulated by ICAEW for audit services.

The future of audit

User-driven assurance: fresh thinking

With calls for better engagement between auditors and users, we recommend the application of a three "pillar" model of what we call "User-Driven Assurance"; a new way of thinking about assurance, directed in its first phase by the needs of the primary user – the shareholders.

Internal control effectiveness: who needs to know?

Reporting on the effectiveness of controls over financial reporting features prominently in the current reviews of UK audit and regulation. This essay explores the current position in the UK, compares it with what happens in the USA and elsewhere in the world, and sets out the case for change and potential options.

What auditors do: the scope of audit

Recent corporate failures have increased public concern about the value of audit and the role of auditors. To help inform debate on the scope of audit, this second supporting paper to our Future of Audit thought leadership essays explains what auditors do, why audits are necessary, the limitations of audit, and what gets audited and what doesn’t.

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