The introduction of technology is transforming businesses all across the globe, which is, therefore, creating an impact on auditing and accounting processes in measuring the performance of the organizations. Audit teams need to integrate technology with their auditing skills to remain effective and efficient in today’s business environment. The improvements in financial and audit technologies have enabled audit teams to improve and facilitate the effectiveness and accuracy of their services. Rather than working on sample data, technology has enabled the auditors to work on entire data available with the organization and drive meaningful and informative insights for better and informed decision making.
No doubt that the introduction of technology has automated and improved the efficiency of the audit processes but auditors still have to play their part. Technology is of no use if organizations don’t have competent and skilled people to work on it. It is important for any organization to take both technology and workforce side by side on this technical journey. Every technology is different, the end result – the reports – might be the same but it requires an effective auditor to understand the same with an IT perspective. The information systems can provide informative and insightful reports but in the end it has to be reviewed by the auditors having auditing and IT skills. Technology helps professionals in doing their jobs but it also makes their jobs more complex which requires new skill sets. The knowledge of knowing how to interact with these emerging technologies make human-machine collaboration all the more important.
As technologies keep on evolving, auditors need to be more watchful. Organizations need to ensure that their employees focus on these emerging technologies by conducting training seminars and workshops. This will enable the audit teams to have better oversight of the technology being involved and will help them to learn a new area. Technology is certainly helping organizations to understand their audit processes, their auditing standards and to be regulatory compliant. But they also need to understand the level of human involvement with machines that are required to make effective and efficient use of audit automation. Technology is to assist humans, and not to replace them which means that the human factor is certainly going to remain valuable. Keeping this in mind, that only those who are equipped with the necessary skill set to work with technology will be part of the process.
As discussed, there is no denying the fact that technology is capable of handling many auditing tasks faster and efficiently, and that these capabilities are going to improve over the course of time, but it doesn’t mean the end of auditors. There will always be a need for human intelligence to interpret and analyze the data that has been generated through machines. Rather than replacing auditors, technology will transform their roles and responsibilities. The auditors will be able to focus more on interpreting and analyzing the data rather than focusing on the daily repetitive tasks. This will enable them to have clear insights and take better and informed decisions adding value to the organization. These emerging technologies are more efficient at risk detection, which will allow auditors to effectively and efficiently manage them. The audit teams need to embrace these new technologies and learn to maximize their usage to enhance their audit processes.
Audit automation cannot be achieved only with technology in place, organizations need to properly understand and implement processes which require dedication and resources. Organizations need to cultivate a proper mindset and skillset by educating and training audit teams to embrace emerging technologies for audit automation. They need to make up with their workforce and focus on audit functions to drive value and positive change across the entire organization.
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