An audit is an inspection or evaluation of an organization or an individual's financial records to ensure they're accurate. Audits can be performed internally by an employee of the organization, or they may be formed externally by an unbiased third party, such as a certified public accountant. Many organizations choose to do an annual audit to ensure everything is correct and to help them understand where they stand financially. Sometimes, they may do it due to legal or contractual obligations, particularly if they owe a debt. In the United States, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants' Auditing Standards Board sets generally accepted standards for audits. A separate set of standards is set by the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board. The average audit takes around three months to complete.
Explore topics like forensic accounting and fraud, data analysis, financial management, and how to present data found during an audit when you take online courses. You can also learn about other aspects of accounting and finance. Whether you want to learn the basics or more details about a specific aspect of auditing, you can do so by taking online courses.
Accounting is the career path that uses auditing skills the most. You can even become an accountant and choose a specialty as an auditor. Building your auditing skills can lead you to other careers as well, such as roles in finance, supply chain, information technology, inventory management, human resources, and government.
People who are good at noticing small details typically make the best auditors. The job also requires analytical thinking, good math skills, and high levels of self-control. You'll need to have integrity. Auditing requires you to be honest and ethical at all times, and you'll need a high tolerance for stress. Not only is the job itself stressful, but when you present results, you may receive criticism or even encounter anger. In some cases, you may even have to present your findings in court.
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