With charity finance teams being under pressure, and levels of staff absence and sickness being higher than ever, during 2022 we received a lot of last-minute requests to sign the audit report and send back the accounts for circulation or filing.
This can be tricky to do quickly, and so this blog is to help set expectations and support you in understanding what happens at the end of the process.
- It might sound obvious but we do need to check that what we are signing is what we actually audited! This is particularly relevant where you may have converted your accounts from a plain text set that was originally approved into a glossy designed version for publication.
- We carry out a review of the post balance sheet event period. If significant time has elapsed since the audit work was completed, we will need to review the latest management accounts and board minutes. We are looking to see if there is anything that might change the accounts – either the numbers or additional disclosure that may be required. We will also ask you for direct confirmation as to whether there is anything we need to be aware of.
- We do a stand back assessment on going concern – has anything changed at your organisation, or in the external environment that would change our view – do we need any more information?
- We consider whether there are any other reporting requirements to third parties, such as the Charity Commission.
- We go through a number of internal procedures to do the final checks and signing off of the audit file – this needs both the audit partner and audit manager to be available, along with the relevant member of our support team.
This all takes time and thought, and is an important part of the process to ensure that we are providing the right audit opinion – so please do allow at least 48 hours for the above procedures to be carried out.
If you have any queries or concerns about how this might impact you, please do comment below or get in touch.