Stories of our impact

Auditor, innovator

If we were to play a word association game, ‘disruptive innovation’ isn’t a traditional match for the auditing business. But ensuring quality, integrity and reliability in an audit means firms must continuously find ways to improve what they do and how they do it. At Deloitte, embedding a culture of innovation to improve how we serve our clients and train our people is a priority. See how we’re innovating our audit business in four key areas.

Four innovative solutions

  1. Analytics is the way to go
    Our Spotlight technology is a patented analytics tool that allows our audit teams to look for unusual trends and anomalies within large sets of data, giving our clients unprecedented visibility of their data trends. Being a global platform, our teams across our member firm network can share new developments in analytics and quickly bring these insights to clients across the world. In FY17, our Spotlight Analytics platform analysed 2.8 billion audit journals.
  2. An automated audit
    Cognitive and robotic technologies are critical in innovating how audits are conducted. We’re working with third parties to experiment, build and invest in new solutions that have huge potential to transform the way we deliver our audits. Over the past year, we have piloted natural language generation software, which takes structured numerical data and turns it into written narrative analysis. We’re now investing in contract-reading capability to transform the way we read and interpret a broad range of documents. 
  3. Propel a promising business
    Propel by Deloitte is a real-time accounting and analytics service designed to help start-ups and SMEs grow. Propel’s growing client portfolio benefits from a range of high-quality accounting essentials, a designated finance expert, bespoke business performance analytics and a range of growth planning tools. And thanks to the use of automation, we are able to offer this service at rates that are affordable for small businesses. In the words of one client: “Propel by Deloitte is a revelation for us. I would (and do almost daily) highly recommend the service to any ambitious, growing business. It is a game changer.”
  4. Get in the zone
    It’s key to keep the creative juices flowing. In 2016, we invited over 1,800 UK audit practitioners to our innovation zone as part of our Audit practice's summer technical training. We showcased the tools and technology under development, and attendees brainstormed how we could use the tools to improve our audits. We also ran sessions for all our graduates, giving them practical examples of how they can get involved in innovation.

It’s nice to get a little recognition

We were delighted to have our efforts recognised by the British Accountancy Awards, where we won Most Innovative Large Practice. Accountancy Age, which runs the awards, praised our efforts to instil a culture of innovation within our firm, encouraging our people to recognise that innovation means both doing new things and doing existing things in new ways.

And what does the next year hold? We're continuing to invest and experiment in cognitive and artificial intelligence capabilities as we consider what the future of audit will look like. We're also developing our analytics capability and building enhanced collaboration tools to transform the way we interact with our clients. Innovating our audit product remains a priority to ensure it remains relevant and incorporates the benefits that new technology can bring.