Back in elementary and high school days, I remember nominating and voting for students for the student body organization. The set is usually composed of a president, a vice-president, a secretary, a treasurer then an auditor. Every once in a while, I have been nominated and elected to the positions except one, the auditor. But now, I am studying to be one.
I have never understood back then the work of an auditor. I have always thought that auditors are just like a helper of the treasurer. The auditors will count the money collected then the treasurer will be the one to keep them. That’s it. I have never thought this position matters or even important. I just understood how significant this position is when it started to sink in to me that I can be a future auditor someday since I took the Accountancy degree.
So, what is really an auditor?
An auditor, in a layman’s definition, is someone who examines accounts in order to make sure they have been recorded or done correctly. They are responsible in expressing an opinion as to whether the financial statements audited are free from any material misstatements or fraud. (Refer to the Independent Auditor’s Report)
Quite interesting right? Especially when you know that part of an auditors work is investigating, examining, finding evidences, testing data assertions gathered and other detective-like works but focused on financial aspect.
I have been doing my internship for almost two weeks and I have seen how not easy an auditor’s life is. It’s the audit season since tax filing is due on the 15th of April so companies are rushing to finish their financial statements and have them audited right away so they can correctly file their taxes. As much as they are in a hurry, so are the auditors since they have the most relevant part.
I have been brought by the auditors to join their field work. We would come to this client and do the audit work. We would all face paper works and our laptops the whole day that it would really hurt my eye. And since we would audit a whole year of transactions, audit would require days and sometimes even weeks before finishing everything. We would come back to the office at the late hour in the evening, usually at 9 to 10 pm and they would stay there overnight still just to finish their work. They would do this because they do not just audit one or two clients. I’m not in my workplace how many are all their clients but based on the tasks they assign as to do, I think it’s more 15. I have footed 3 financial statements, my classmates have done more than 5, if I sum them all, they’re all more than 15 and they are in finishing the audit process. I see these auditors as zombies. They do not have proper sleep, diet and exercise for almost 4 months. But they still love their work. They still talk about it, they are proud of it.
In the future, I might be one of them. But for now I don’t want to worry about anything yet. I’ll take one day at time. I still have major exams to pass before becoming an official auditor. These are one of those things I know worth sacrificing for.