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Small firm big challenge

Auditor competencies can be a huge topic even for smaller audit firms. Gill Spaul takes a look at recruitment, development and support.

Firms need to have policies and procedures to demonstrate that:

  • there will be sufficient suitably qualified staff and partners with the competencies to cope with the number and complexity of audit assignments they have;
  • the people they recruit have the right mix of skills and experience (or the potential to develop or acquire these) and the required personal characteristics.

Firms should be constantly re-evaluating what skills and characteristics they need both for their current and anticipated future client base. The skills required to perform audits are evolving – this means that recruitment requirements must evolve too.

Obviously it’s up to each individual firms to determine what skills it requires now and for the future, but for most firms these are likely to include:

  • scepticism;
  • the ability to think;
  • the ability to communicate (verbally and – crucially – in writing);
  • IT proficiency;
  • the ability to work in teams; and
  • numeracy

This is an extract from an article in the May 2015 edition of Audit & Beyond, the magazine of the Audit and Assurance Faculty.

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