Audits in the age of COVID-19

COVID-19 has impacted all facets of life and until a vaccine is found, is likely to continue to do so for some time. That said, life and business must go on, with company audits being no exception.

Naturally, some may have concerns regarding on-site auditing in the current circumstances and some audit firms have been unwilling to carry out audits at this time or have significantly delayed audits in the hope that things would return to normal sooner than they have. This has left many businesses with the unwanted task of finding a new auditor at short notice.

At Champion, we believe that physical audits are possible and can be carried out with appropriate social distancing, but where they are not, our set up allows us to carry out audits entirely remotely. After all, a quality audit demonstrates confidence and operational transparency to external shareholders, potential investors and creditors (including banks) — which is more important than ever during periods of flux.

Pre-pandemic, we conducted and concluded our audits with minimal disruption to the day-to-day running of your business. We are determined to ensure nothing has changed post-outbreak.

A completely remote audit is something many clients would never have previously considered. Some will return to on-site audits post-COVID, while others have indicated they will continue with this new way of working.

Stock takes have proven particularly difficult for some auditors, with a number refusing to visit sites. However, we have endeavored to carry out stock takes throughout the pandemic wherever possible.  With careful planning we can ensure that social distancing is maintained throughout the visit.  Alternatively, we have conducted our checks by utilising one of the various video conferencing facilities available. This has led to new clients turning to Champion Accountants for their auditing during this time.

Throughout lockdown we have attended client board meetings and AGMs via video conferencing. Our audit findings reports are compiled in an accessible electronic format so they can be circulated prior to the meeting. They provide a comprehensive but concise summary of the findings and conclusions from our audit, which can be easily understood by non-financial and financial people alike.

By taking a practical and pragmatic approach, whilst ensuring compliance with lock down and social distancing rules, we have been able to support our clients through this difficult period as well as relieving any concerns about compliance with regulatory obligations.

Rather than treat an audit as a compliance exercise, we provide maximum value by delivering a complete overview of your business. We realise that as a business owner, you may have little time to reflect on the bigger picture. We view the audit process as an opportunity to provide that insight, spot opportunities and suggest improvements.

As a firm, we do whatever we can to deliver the best service and support to our clients. We take a proactive, hands-on approach to audits, extending all the way to partner level. This means that throughout the entire audit process, you’ll have a highly experienced team of experts at your disposal.

To find out more, contact audit partner, Sue Harris, on or call 01244 404 420.