The coronavirus crisis affected all areas of business and in most cases forced companies to change dramatically. Audit is no exception. However, it is not only the pandemic that is driving the industry to global transformations. What factors influence the audit today? How is the post-COVID reality changing and how can auditors painlessly ‘fit’ into the cycle of change?

The future belongs to the latest technologies

To remain successful, audit firms need to implement innovative and high-tech solutions that benefit both the firm and its clients. The pandemic and related restrictions have shown that without the active use of technology, the audit firm will not be able to operate.

Automation of audit processes, application of artificial intelligence and blockchain technologies will allow to execute projects quickly without losing quality, which will be a priority.

International experts predict that cloud technologies will become more widespread in the post-COVID reality. ‘Cloud’ accounting and document management speed up the performance of certain tasks. That is why audit firms need not only to move to cloud solutions, but also to transfer their clients to them. This will allow to work on the project at any time and in any place, which, of course, will be appreciated by clients, who will also be able to control the work of the auditor.

The office should be made ‘paperless’ as soon as possible. The world's leading companies have long transferred all documents into electronic form, placing it in the ‘clouds’. This is not only convenient, but also helps all employees to be in the same corporate system, saves money and does not harm the environment.

Experts emphasize the importance of integrating all existing programs into a single office system. No program should complicate or slow down the workflow.

Developing applications that a client of an audit firm can install and use to control the project, expand their knowledge or obtain new information is a very interesting idea. For example, your company prepares tax advice articles for the site, conducts seminars, and consultants regularly post articles on the pages of specialized publications. In that case, why not combine all this useful information for the clients in an application that they will gladly install on their phones and will use at any time convenient for them, each time pleasantly remembering your company?

Today, to save time and reduce the number of technical staff, international audit firms often use optical character recognition technology. Now they have become truly perfect. Technologies independently sort information and enter it into an accounting or other program as required. Imagine how they can speed up the work of auditors? Firms will be able to work simply at cosmic speeds.

New types of services and nuances of working with young talents

Requirements for the quality of services will increase every year. Try to do everything in your power not to compromise on quality. Hire qualified staff who know how to do their job well. In addition, do not forget about the regular improvement of professional knowledge. This is critical for audit firm employees.

No need to be afraid of change – they are inevitable. It is very likely that even now, when the pandemic is receding and the world is changing irreversibly, we will have to master new areas of service. According to international experts, most likely, these services will be related to the automation of business processes of audit firms’ clients, the use of cloud technologies, support for the implementation of artificial intelligence, and so on.

Consider which specialists will be able to implement such projects, and look closely at the young talented professionals, the so-called Generation Z.