Audit and Consulting Services to Government
Providing services to governmental agencies is demanding and requires specific audit skills. Working in cooperation with the Illinois Auditor General, we have audited various governmental agencies in northern Illinois and we have also performed compliance testing, which tests whether the entity has collected or spent funds in accordance with prescribed laws and procedures.
Audited financial statements for governmental agencies are typically much more detailed than a financial audit for a nonpublic entity; the same detail is present in the reports on compliance that we prepare for governmental bodies. These reports include many more disclosures and types of financial statements, including a management discussion and analysis section. It also requires unique communication skills, as we must interface with the governmental agency and the Illinois Auditor General’s office throughout the entire engagement. We chose to become involved in this type of work because of the unique challenges – our firm has historical strengths in audit, but we believed that we could enhance those core audit skills by stretching our professional horizons.
In addition, our firm consults with governments and governmental agencies to supplement their in-house accounting skills. We recently completed an engagement with an agency of local government that did not have adequate in-house accounting knowledge. This deficiency had to inaccurate and incomplete accounting records, and also resulted in unacceptably long delays each year before the government could have its books and records ready for its external auditors. Professionals from our firm consulted with the client, analyzed the work performed, recommended corrective action, and trained personnel. This enabled the client to improve the accuracy of its records and, importantly, to improve the turnaround time for its year-end financial reporting.