AUDIT AND ASSURANCE
The activities surrounding the completion of a client annual Financial Statements are the foundation stones of our client relationship. Our approach to this assignment reflects our commitment to a quality tailored service delivered in the context of a close knowledgeable relationship with our client. The approach does not vary whether it is a large audit assignment or a sole trader set of accounts.
At Meagher Moynihan we are conscious that in the current challenging times the preparation of annual Financial Statements can be viewed as an expensive compliance task with no real impact or effect on the operational challenges facing small and medium -size enterprises.
We agree, this maybe the case if the following elements are not present in the product and service provided to the client:
Information is timely: Financial Statements produced months after the year end only to satisfy filing requirements are no assistance in making business decisions.
Information is relevant: If the Financial Statements are merely explained in terms of ratio analysis or tax adjustments, they do not contribute to the clients understanding of where solutions/opportunities may lie in the year ahead.
Information is understandable: technical jargon such as variance analysis, debt equality ratios, liquidity ratio etc. does not convey simple practical steps which a client must enact to address a pressing business need.
Information must be effectively communicated: Receiving the Accounts in the post with a note to sign and return does not allow for the information obtained during the audit/accounts preparation to be conveyed to the client in an objective and helpful manner.
The information must be affordable: Pretty presentations and long heavily staffed meetings are not required if the service provider understands the clients and the individual circumstances.
How do Meagher Moynihan ensure our service addresses these needs and concerns?
1. Planning. We engage with our clients on the assignment at least 2 months before the year end. The purpose of this engagement is to:
Agree the delivery date of information and start date of audit. Our goal is to start all assignments within FOUR WEEKS of the clients year end. Agree the end date: Our commitment to our clients is to have draft accounts available 2 weeks after the commencement of the audit. Agreeing dates well in advance is respectful of people’s busy schedule, now work commitments and also allows them to communicate effectively with other interested parties such as shareholders, banks and creditors. Agree fees. All our audit fees are agreed in advance to allow our client to manage their finances and avoid surprises.
2. Focus. Our audit/accounts preparation plan is prepared following a detailed consultation with the client and/or CFO to identify the risk areas that are a priority to the client and effect their daily lives.
3. Staff. In conducting each assignment we carefully consider the appropriate skills and experience we need from our team and allocate appropriately to each section of the assignment.
4. Communications. Our distinct approach to the annual Financial Statements assignments is predicated on the meeting structure which is at its core. There are two distinct elements to the meeting:
A. Operational: This meeting is based upon the draft Financial Statements, we use this meeting to achieve the following:
• Confirmation that there is complete accuracy agreed of individual transactions.
• Confirmation of our understanding on the various operational issues.
• Agreement of any adjustments suggested as a result of the work conducted by Meagher Moynihan.
• The desired outcome of this meeting is a clear understanding of the challenges facing the business in the coming year and ownership of the financial implications of the various options available.
B. Strategic: The second meeting usually held a week later is specifically focused on the high level strategic issues arising from the annual accounts, these include:
B. Personal and Business Wealth Management.
C. Sales strategy.
D. Retirement planning.
Our annual Financial Statements service is adaptable to all business models and reporting requirements including audit exempt companies.
All too often business people are so consumed by the daily demands of trade, paying wages, collecting debtors and driving sales that they never afford themselves the opportunity to draw breath, step back and consider alternative causes of action. In Meagher Moynihan we feel this is an essential part of the annual accounts process. It is not an opportunity to preach or regret, rather a time to advise, help, encourage and provide real solutions that make it possible to grow businesses and improve profitability.
As one would expect of a professional and progressive firm, we can also provide our clients with a full service in respect of special audit/accountants reports including:
• Auctioneers reports.
• Haulage licence.
• Financial Regulator reports for brokers and Investment Intermediaries.