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The Evolution of the Auditor

It is not about change anymore; it is about audit transformation

With technology advancing at an unprecedented pace and enabling organisations to harness and analyse more data than ever before, the financial audit is poised for profound and rapid change.

Therefore, the ability to adapt to change (which is happening at an extraordinary rate) is arguably one of the most important attributes that our current auditors and audit trainees, the future South African Chartered Accountants (CA(SA)), will need in our digital age.

Technology, combined with the expertise of today’s skilled auditor, allows auditors to take a much deeper dive into the financial facets of an organisation and provide insights that result in more-informed decisions in support of a high-quality audit.

This is precisely why, in an ambitious project called CA2025 , the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA), together with the Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors (IRBA), has commissioned research into the expected competencies of CAs(SA) and Registered Auditors (RAs) in the future.

This year, SAICA entered the final stage of its CA2025 project, aimed to completely overhaul the qualification process and competency framework to ensure it remains fit for purpose in a rapidly changing world.As the audit and accounting profession gears up for the CA2025 project, Deloitte Africa, established the Analytics Specialist Audit Trainee Program (“Analytics Program”) during 2019.

This Analytics Program sets to disrupt the traditional auditor trainee curriculum. The bar is set high throughout the Analytics Program and challenges our audit analytics trainees to become proficient capability areas such as:

  • Relational database management systems
  • Data visualisations
  • Predictive and regression analytics
  • Substantive test of detail analytics.

With the above capability, the audit teams are far more empowered to execute highest quality audits faster and better as they have the ability to handle large data sets, the creativity mindset to design bespoke analytics and professional judgement to analyse the output appropriately in accordance with the International Auditing Standards (ISAs). The result too is, we are saving our clients more time and adding significant value through combined additional insights to their businesses.

Significant growth is expected in audit transformation over the next two years, which includes:

  • Faster enhancement of our audit approaches through advance analytics across our Africa audit client engagements
  • Significant fast track of adoption of standard Deloitte audit analytics providing far more consistency in executing our audits
  • Providing insights through our analytics capability to our stakeholders such as Audit and Board Committees

This Deloitte Analytics Program is the first of its kind in the audit profession in Africa and we are proud to have seen positive results over the past two years.Our Global Deloitte network recognised the significant impact this program is having across our audit engagements, to such an extent that the Deloitte Analytics Program has been Globalised and will be deployed to our other member firms across the Globe from mid-April 2021.

Our clients will continue to experience consistent audits whilst through this new Auditor Trainee Talent model we will reach far more traditional auditor trainees and empowering them to execute their tasks far better during the ever so evolving digital age.

Trainees successfully completing this program during their 3-year articles at Deloitte and achieving their CA(SA) through SAICA can look forward to be accredited with the prestigious Deloitte Data Analytics competency.Various stakeholders are looking into this Analytics Program as the audit and accounting profession prepares for evolving the Chartered Accountant and Registered Auditor curriculum.

As the Analytics Program entered its 3rd year, we welcome our brand new first year analytics audit trainees as they embark on this well sought-after program:

Watch this space! 
[1] CA2025 – CA2025

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