Audit Committee Resource Guide
This guide helps audit committee members and management better understand the requirements, roles, and responsibilities of the audit committee.
Audit Committee Leading Practices and Trends
Assess audit committee practices and discuss agendas and other considerations.
Audit Committee Brief
A periodic publication that provides audit committee members with recommendations, overviews of corporate governance resources, regulatory and legislative environment outlooks, and technical updates.
Latest edition of the Audit Committee Brief
Issue 3 - April 2015
This issue of the Audit Committee Brief includes highlights on the following topics:
- FASB tentatively defers new revenue standard
- IIA and CAQ report tackles how to enhance interactions among the internal and external auditors and the audit committee
- The audit of the future
- PCAOB speech emphasizes important roles of internal audit and the audit committee
- Update of Deloitte’s Audit Committee Resource Guide
- PCAOB updates its standard-setting agenda
- FASB amends its consolidation model
AQIs: Measuring quality through metrics
Issue 2 - 2015
The idea of establishing measures of audit quality that can be used by stakeholders in the audit process—including audit committees—has been discussed since at least 2008. This year promises to be a significant one for this topic, as there are several active projects focused on the question of whether metrics that provide insight into audit quality (often referred to as audit quality indicators or AQIs) can be developed. The goals of these projects are for all stakeholders in the audit process to be aware of and agree on the fundamental elements that contribute to a quality audit, and to spur productive dialogue among the various stakeholders on how to support and enhance audit quality.
Highlights from the AICPA’s 2014 conference on current SEC and PCAOB developments
Issue 1 - 2015
Audit quality initiatives, internal control over financial reporting, disclosure effectiveness, standard-setting initiatives, and IFRS were frequent topics of discussion at the 2014 AICPA conference. SEC staff and members of the PCAOB, FASB, and IASB provided updates on recent developments and offered a glimpse into their rulemaking and initiatives for the coming year. This issue of the Audit Committee Brief highlights topics and insights from the conference that were particularly relevant to audit committees and provides links to additional resources for further information.
What’s on your agenda for 2015?
The depth and range of the audit committee’s duties are greater than ever, and it has become increasingly important to prioritize the agenda and allocate time appropriately. While the responsibility to oversee financial reporting and compliance and to monitor management activities remains fundamental, items such as information technology, globalization, regulatory matters, risk oversight, and tax issues have recently played a significant role in many audit committees’ activities, and this is likely to continue in 2015. This edition of the Audit Committee Brief highlights several prominent and timely issues likely to be high priorities for audit committees in 2015, and provides considerations and questions to ask regarding these topics, as well as resources for further information.
Internal Audit: Moving beyond Sarbanes-Oxley Compliance
Among the most common expectations of internal audit is to gain assurance on financial controls, the reliable execution of audit plans, and coordination with the external auditor. But given the lack of specific guidelines or requirements regarding internal audit’s responsibilities, there is a broad range of practice based on organizational needs, structure, and culture. Audit committees can play an important role in confirming the whole organization is on the same page regarding the goals for internal audit, and in providing a strong avenue of communication for the chief audit executive to share concerns and perspectives. This issue of the Audit Committee Brief focuses on the evolving role of the internal audit function, and provides considerations for how audit committees can effectively work with management and internal audit to maximize the value of the function in the context of a company’s specific circumstances.
Finance Talent: Building Sustainable Leadership
The competition for top-performing finance talent remains strong. Effectively identifying and onboarding senior finance professionals, monitoring their career development, and managing the pipeline of future leaders can help sustain an organization’s success. Executive succession and development are often the responsibility of the full board. However, the audit committee may consider becoming involved in overseeing the finance organization, keeping the quality and reliability of financial accounting and reporting and related controls at the forefront.
Update on regulatory issues affecting audit committees
Audit quality, transparency, auditor retention, and other financial reporting matters relevant to audit committees have been on regulators’ agendas in recent months. The SEC, PCAOB, and other regulatory bodies are actively soliciting the audit committee’s views on various topics and initiatives, and have released a variety of publications, communications, and resources targeted to committee members. This issue of the Audit Committee Brief discusses recent domestic and international regulatory developments that are likely to affect audit committees, and includes links to a variety of resources for further information.
The 2013 COSO framework and the audit committee
Audit committees play a critical role in overseeing internal control. Although their primary focus may be on internal control over financial reporting, now, more than ever, audit committees are taking the lead in overseeing controls pertaining to compliance and operational matters. This issue of the Audit Committee Brief highlights hot topics related to internal control over financial reporting in light of the issuance of the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations of the Treadway Commission’s (COSO’s) updated 2013 Internal Control — Integrated Framework (2013 COSO Framework). Also included are important considerations for audit committees in overseeing the implementation of the 2013 COSO Framework, and a discussion of how the framework can help audit committees manage elevated expectations regarding internal control.
A new era in audit committee reporting
Regulators, investor advocates, and other stakeholders have increasingly called for companies to build trust with investors in recent years. Much of this attention has focused on the audit committee’s role in supporting investor interests. The calls for increased transparency in the oversight of the independent auditor and other key audit committee duties will likely continue to grow, and audit committees can respond by providing more meaningful disclosures that increase awareness of their responsibilities and how individual committees carry them out. This Audit Committee Brief provides an overview of SEC requirements for audit committee reports and highlights an analysis Deloitte completed in 2013 that took a deeper look at the language audit committees use in their reports in their effort to be more transparent.
A voice at the table: Becoming more involved in the financial reporting regulatory process
Regulators and standard setters frequently encourage audit committees and other stakeholders to be more involved in regulatory and standard-setting activities that affect their companies and industries. Among the most effective means for audit committees to enhance their involvement is through becoming familiar with domestic and global standard-setting processes, as well as audit quality and financial reporting initiatives. Participation in the standard-setting and rule-making process allows audit committees to have a substantive voice in the architecture of the financial reporting regulatory system, which affects the operations of the capital markets.
- Technology at the forefront (May/June 2014)
- The role of the audit committee throughout the M&A life cycle (April 2014)
- Highlights from the AICPA’s 2013 conference on current SEC and PCAOB developments (January 2014)
- Top issues for audit committees in 2014 (November/December 2013)
- Navigating anti-corruption compliance (October 2013)
- The era of sustainability disclosure (September 2013)
- Cybersecurity and the audit committee (August 2013)
- The road to convergence (May 2013)
- Charting the course: Audit committee annual activities (April 2013)
- Understanding the CFO and CIO dynamic (March 2013)
- Evaluating the external auditor (February 2013)
- Highlights from the AICPA’s 2012 SEC and PCAOB conference (January 2013)
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