Approximately 50% of companies have transitioned to some form of continuous audit (CA). A CA system uses technology to automate the audit process. Rather than a limited sampling of data that takes place in the past, CA happens in real-time. This allows the internal auditors to “continually” gather business data on internal controls, information systems, processes, and transactions.
The downsides of a conventional audit are:
- They only provide a snapshot of the business at a point in the past. This means that issues may go undetected for months.
- Audits only analyze a sample of transactions and data. This creates the possibility that issues may be missed.
- Audits are manual and require a large amount of time and resources.
- Audits can take weeks or months.
The benefits of a continuous audit are:
- They are ongoing and take place in real-time.
- CA analyze all transactions, not just a sample.
- Because they are automated using software, they are less labor-intensive.
- There no longer is the need to wait weeks or months for company data.
Alteryx supports the continuous audit use case and has worked with multiple customers in creating their CA system. Alteryx can enable Data connectivity to every financial system, many of which are outdated and in silos. This allows for the testing of millions of transactions to ensure all risks are addressed. Audits can be run at any time leadership require. Alteryx allows for end-to-end automation with self-service dashboards without reliance on the Data Science team.
To get started with a continuous audit, Gartner suggests the following steps:
- Establish Priority Areas
- Identify Audit Rules
- Determine Process Frequency
- Configure Parameters and Execute
- Manage Results and Follow Up
- Report Results
- Assess Emerging Risk and Add to register
Following these steps and using Alteryx can result in an effective continuous audit program.
For more information on Continuous Audit and other Audit use cases, download the ebook.