Joanne Seeds – Making Sense of Numbers.

We have a new Auditor that will be visiting the company to do the year-end audit.  We don’t know them – and yet we already dread their arrival.

The dreaded “Auditor”.  Companies can’t get away from them.  We have Internal, External, SOX, Income Tax, Commodity Tax, Customs, and the list goes on.

Why do we despise them so much?  Some of the reasons might be:

  • They pick apart our processes
  • They look for errors
  • They question everything we do
  • They make us look bad
  • They put us on the defensive
  • Their visits mean more work
  • We are graded by their audit findings, poor grades mean our department looks bad

As Accountants, we are conditioned from our first job to dread the Auditors arrival.

The perception passed down by management is that everything needs to be in order before they arrive.  Cover our tracks.

Accountants rush around madly to put things in order hoping that the auditor doesn’t find a problem.  Stress levels increase, tension is high while the audit is being carried out, and finally, once they are gone, there is a momentary sigh of relief.

This is short lived, because once the Audit Report is received, all of the negative remarks and problems are brought to managements attention, then everything hits the fan.

Who are these auditors, and does it have to be this way?