When remote work becomes routine

How has the financial audit changed since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic? Four auditors and two credit unions weigh in.

As the coronavirus pandemic spreads through 2020, remote work is becoming the norm for nonessential business operations. In this new reality, credit unions should prepare for a shift in an important segment of operations: the annual opinion audit.

The pandemic did not inspire the first remote audit; however, it has amplified the trend. As travel becomes riskier and information sharing becomes more secure, CPA firms and credit unions are comfortably, confidently administering audits remotely.

“We’ve been building our infrastructure these past few years to do more of our work remotely,” says Brian Mogensen, principal at CliftonLarsonAllen. “The work is in preparing, reviewing, and ensuring the reasonableness of financial statements, be they on the balance sheet, income statement, or cash flow statement.”

Pre-pandemic, the interim and final fieldwork for most audits occurred on site. A team of auditors would fly into a town for several days, meet with the client every day, and review financial statements in detail. But there’s also work that occurs on a deeper level than that, says Chad Flaherty, senior manager at Moss Adams.


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