Audit Data Analytics – Clean It Up

In the fourth of our 5-blog series about data analytics, our focus is on how to get clean data for data analytics testing.

Data Analytics – The Challenge

To start, it is common knowledge that obtaining information from clients is one of the most challenging parts of an audit. Before testing of data can begin, countless hours are spent:

  • Preparing client data requests
  • Managing the exchange of documents
  • Reviewing documents provided by the client

Additionally, while features like Engagement Organizer streamline the data request process, other issues like formatting problems or extraneous information often make the client-provided documents unusable. Furthermore, when that happens the process must start over, and that adds more time to the job. However, on the bright side, there ARE solutions that help overcome these challenges. For example, TeamMate Analytics is one.

Data Analytics – The Solution

In fact, the TeamMate Analytics solution includes a multitude of tools for auditors. Among them are ones that help format and extract information from client documents. The value you receive from that is you will eliminate the need for additional data requests. Some of those tools are:

  • Sheet Checker function – scans the worksheet for missing data or incorrect formatting, then automatically fixes many of the common issues in source data like:
    • Blank rows or columns
    • Missing or duplicate headers and total rows
  • Manipulate Fields function – Includes ‘quick tools’ that simplify the process of manipulating and cleansing data. These tools:
    • Quickly adjust the format of numbers, dates, or text
    • Extract pieces of text
    • Fill blank cells
    • Split or combine debits and credits

The combination of these tools effortlessly transforms a poorly formatted document into one that is ready for testing.

Additionally, an Exception Report extracts the information relevant for the test, leaving any extraneous information behind. This tool extracts records that meet up to three given criteria in an ‘and/or configuration’. Use it to extract:

  • Items where values exceed a certain threshold, or meet certain date criteria
  • Records that have cells that are:
    • Blank or not blank
    • Begin, end or contain certain criteria

Conclusion

In short, the auditor can then quickly extract needed information for testing. The process moves from a poorly formatted report into a ready-for-testing document!

Oftentimes, the methods of obtaining information from clients can be maddening. Auditors go through multiple versions of documents simply because of improperly formatted data. TeamMate Analytics, on the other hand, significantly shortens this cycle with tools that:

  • Manage formatting issues
  • Extract only the data relevant for testing

Therefore, watch the TeamMate Analytics video to learn more.

P. S.

The TeamMate Analytics solution is part of Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach. This approach seamlessly unites CCH Audit Accelerator, CCH ProSystem fx Engagement, TeamMate Analytics, CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach, and CCH Accounting Research Manager. Additionally, it also leverages our School of Audit. This combination of solutions helps firms maximize realizations and increase audit quality to ensure peer review readiness. If you have not checked out these solutions and this approach, it is worth your time to do so. Consider attending a complimentary demo at a time that fits your schedule.

Finally, subscribe to the Audit Intelligence (AI) Spotlights monthly newsletter. Learn about audit news, whitepapers, webinars and more – delivered straight to your inbox.

5-blog series about data analytics

  1. Visualization
  2. Where to Start
  3. Age of Disruption

Also, be sure to check our Tax & Accounting Blog next week for the final post in this 5-blog data analytics series.

AUTHOR

Patrick Tokarski

All stories by: Patrick Tokarski