Presley S. Ford, Jr. Partner, Dallas Office
Presented before the Dallas Chapter, Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants -December 1974
THE REVIEWER AND HIS GOALS
Let us begin with the observation that all auditors review (or should review) workpapers. How each proceeds under specific circumstances will be dictated primarily by his goals.
• Self-Review. All auditors, from assistants to partners, ought to review their own workpapers. The individual's goal is to be sure that he has done a good job, one that will win the approval of his superiors and/or provide a strong defense against his critics. This is the best review of all. It speeds up the review by others and minimizes the lost time and motion required to "clean up" the workpapers.
Self-review is best done as each worksheet or analysis is completed. Among the questions the accountant should ask himself are the following:
• Is my work complete?
• Is my worksheet a clear record of the work done and the conclusions reached?
• Is my work free of clerical errors?
• Senior Review. The senior accountant plays the key role in field work. He lays out and assigns the work of the audit team. Some audit evidence he obtains personally; some is obtained by his assistants. Only when the entire body of audit evidence has entered his mind, only when the various pieces have been fit together can he form an opinion with respect to the financial statements.
As the senior reviews his assistants' worksheets, he should ask himself such questions as the following:
• Has my assistant carried out my instructions?
• Are his worksheets a clear record of the work done and the conclusions reached?