What is an Auditing Clerk?
The financial Audit of any particular organization comprises several different avenues that should be covered to ensure that auditors can get sufficient evidence, based on which they can give their opinion on the company’s financial statements. The scope of audit work is considered quite expansive, essentially because significant groundwork needs to be covered. Ranging from financial statements to individual accounts, the scope of work is nothing short of being cumbersome. Therefore, a teaviduals involved in an audit executes overall audit work and finishes the audit within the designated time limit.
When audit teams are formed, there is a certain hierarchy that is accounted for. Hence, in this regard, auditors tend to hire assistants that can help them execute the audit process with relative ease. These assistants are referred to as auditing clerks. They are mainly hired to facilitate the audit process and streamline it to complete the overall audit task in due time. Hence, auditing clerks are hired to ensure that the overall auditing processes are undertaken appropriately.
Auditing clerks can be best described as assistants to the auditors. They take guidance from their senior auditors and help them in seamlessly executing the audit process.
What does an Auditing clerk do?
There are numerous different things that an auditing clerk is hired for. These main items include several components that are involved in the audit process. Examples of these things are given below:
- Reconciliation of balances: During normal business processes, several different transactions take place. It is not always possible for the auditor alone to carry out all these reconciliations. In this regard, some amount of work is also delegated to the auditing clerk to ensure that they can carry out some work on behalf of the auditors so that the process can be completed effectively.
- Preparation of working papers: Audit working papers are considered very important during the normal course of the audit task. The preparation of working papers, however, is considered to be a very cumbersome task. The auditors can delegate this task too, and auditing clerks can help prepare the working papers.
- Paperwork and documentation: Vouching is another integral part of the auditing process. It requires the auditor to check a sample of receipts to verify if the claims that the management has made are, in fact, true. Vouching, however, is a very detailed task that requires serious grit. Hence, auditing clerks are in place to streamline the vouching process and make it easier and convenient for auditors to gather all paperwork in due time.
- Verification and recalculation: The audit process requires auditors to go through all the different transactions. This also includes recalculation of different account totals, like interest payable and cash ledger reconciliation. This is fundamental but still needs to be done to reduce the overall risk involved in the audit process.
Therefore, it can be seen that auditing clerks are in place to make the work easier for the auditors by carrying out tasks that do not necessarily require a certified auditor to complete the stated task. The main objective behind hiring an auditing clerk is to ensure that audit work is streamlined and delegated in a manner that is efficient and effective.
However, this does not mean that auditing clerks are supposed to do all the tasks that an auditor is required to do. There is a line drawn between the scope of the auditor’s work and the auditing clerk.
What are auditing clerks NOT supposed to do?
Auditing clerks are supposed to act as an aid towards the overall audit process. However, they are not supposed to do the following:
- Auditing clerks are not supposed to define the scope of the audit. That is the auditor’s work, and this authority should not be passed on to the auditing clerk.
- Undertaking a risk assessment is also something that should be restricted to auditors and not auditing clerks. Risk assessment is a critical part of the auditing process. It should not be delegated to auditing clerks because they lack the professional knowledge to understand the risk involved.
- Auditing clerks are also not supposed to make any decisions on behalf of auditors. They are required to ensure that the overall audit process is executed smoothly so that auditors are facilitated with the execution of the audit seamlessly.
How to become an Auditing Clerk?
Therefore, it can be seen that the work (and the job description of an auditing clerk) is similar, but also lesser as compared to auditors. There are several different ways in which an individual can secure a job as an auditing clerk.
- High school diploma with coursework in accounting or finance: Having a background in accounting and finance is imperative to securing a job as an auditing clerk. This is because an idea regarding the auditing background is essential to maintain some professionalism during the audit process.
- Undergraduate degree: As far as undergraduate degrees are concerned, it is important to ensure that a basic educational background can enable auditors to complete the audit process in a limited time period.
Therefore, to become an auditing clerk, it can be seen that it is important to have a basic education that can help auditing clerks properly execute their jobs. More so than not, auditing clerks are known to have on-the-job training. Therefore, having prior experience might not be altogether instrumental. In the same manner, it can also be seen that auditing clerks tend to gather experience whilst they are on the job. After that, they might choose to move forward with their careers as a proper auditor.
Hence, it can be seen that auditing clerks tend to be part of auditing teams for a couple of years, after which they eventually go for higher studies or specialization in their careers. However, the application process to become an auditing clerk is not altogether easy. Entry into a proper auditing firm can be tough. Therefore, it is best for aspiring candidates to look for contractual openings or even internships in audit or accountancy-related companies.
Although being an auditing clerk does not pay and being an auditor is a role that can help individuals identify their interest in the respective field. It can also help individuals build an experience that can potentially help them secure better and more specific jobs in the future. However, auditing clerks are essential for any auditing company (and a team of auditors). Therefore, getting a job as an auditing clerk is easier than getting appointed as an auditor.
Becoming an auditing clerk is not a daunting or insurmountable task. It just requires focus and consistency on the part of applicants. Having the right look out for the job is very important because it helps figure out opportunities in this relevant field.