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Weaver Delivers Better Quality, More Efficient Audits with the Help of Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach

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Weaver needed a more efficient audit process that would provide better quality audits to meet new AICPA guidelines. Weaver saw a 10 percent efficiency improvement and received higher quality audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach, which includes CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement, CCH® ProSystem fx® Knowledge Coach and CCH® Accounting Research Manager®.

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Weaver Delivers Better Quality, More Efficient Audits with the Help of Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach

  1. 1. Tax & Accounting US Weaver Delivers More Effective, More Efficient Audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach Case Study: Integrated Audit Approach When you have to be right
  2. 2. Weaver Delivers More Effective, More Efficient Audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach2 Challenge: Weaver wanted a more efficient and effective audit process that would also allow them to better serve their clients and manage the firm’s risk. Solution: The firm implemented Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach, including CCH® ProSystem fx® Engagement, CCH® ProSystem fx® Knowledge Coach and CCH® Accounting Research Manager® . Weaver improved its audit process, resulting in a 10 percent efficiency improvement. Based in Texas with offices in Dallas, Forth Worth, Houston, Conroe, Midland, Austin and San Antonio, Weaver also has offices in Los Angeles, California and Stamford, Connecticut. It is the largest independent accounting firm in the Southwest, ranked among the top 40 firms in the country, and has nearly 600 employees — 200 of which are in the audit department. Twelve years ago, Weaver switched to CCH ProSystem fx Engagement. Leadership of Weaver knew that the software would bring the firm’s audit workflow into the digital realm and save time through several means, such as providing a central repository for tracking, reporting, review and sign-off of their audit and tax engagements. CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach, Wolters Kluwer’s audit workflow application, and CCH Accounting Research Manager caught the attention of David Rook, Chief Operating Officer of Assurance and Advisory in 2011. The firm began considering how to move its entire audit process to Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach. Why? Because the firm wanted to take advantage of a fully integrated end-to-end audit solution that provides higher quality audits through dynamic linking of procedures to risks while also leveraging their auditors’ expertise for a growth strategy that better serves their clients. “We were interested in the integrated approach of the audit software actually being embedded within CCH ProSystem fx Engagement because it makes the process incredibly efficient. I like how the product links between the risk assessment and audit programs and also updates changes throughout all affected workpapers. From a firm leadership perspective, I felt confident that we could produce more efficient and effective audits than before.” — David Rook, Chief Operating Officer of Assurance and Advisory, Weaver Laura Lambert, Partner of Assurance Services, agreed and added that since the majority of their industries were included in Wolters Kluwer’s research titles, they were ready to implement. Laura Lambert Partner of Assurance Services Weaver Houston, Texas David Rook Chief Operating Officer of Assurance and Advisory Weaver Houston, Texas
  3. 3. Choosing to Be Part of Baker Tilly International Weaver is an independent member of the Baker Tilly International network, which provides resources across North America, Latin America, Asia Pacific, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Through its independent membership, Weaver is able to provide assurance, tax and advisory services to its clients by working with locally based professionals who understand the local regulations and professional accounting standards. Weaver Delivers More Effective, More Efficient Audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach 3 The Integrated Audit Approach Migrating to new software meant Weaver’s entire audit team would move to Wolters Kluwer’s Knowledge-Based Audit (KBA) Methodology, which was developed to meet AICPA’s risk-based audit standards. CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach takes that methodology and brings it to life in a way that helps auditors plan and execute audits so compliance risk is minimized and efficiency is improved. Instead of following predefined checklists, CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach guides auditors through the audit process drawing connections between steps and risks. Dynamic, real-time, iterative processes and tools encourage auditor judgment and continual learning, which results in higher quality and minimal over-auditing. “This new audit process is more efficient than what we were using before. Now we’re building the list, not merely doing a list. Also, when a risk area is identified, CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach alerts the auditor if the procedure is not properly linked to the risk. That helps us ensure we stay focused on the right areas and do an adequate amount of work.” — Rook “And, with CCH Accounting Research Manager as a key part of this integrated set of solutions, researching and linking source documents is easier than ever.” — Laura Lambert, Partner of Assurance Services, Weaver
  4. 4. Weaver Delivers More Effective, More Efficient Audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach4 Time Savings In year one, while the firm was implementing and learning the software, audits took longer than they had previously. However, in year two the firm is experiencing a 10 to 15 percent time savings, which is already better than what the firm saw with their previous solution. Rook fully expects in year three the time savings will increase to 20 percent. Providing a Better Audit Also important, Rook and Lambert both agree that Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach really does deliver a more effective audit. “Our audits are more clearly documented. We cover everything necessary, but nothing more. It’s a more comprehensive audit than we were able to provide in the past. And in doing a more effective audit, we’re protecting the firm. Most important we understand our clients better.” — Lambert Steps for a Smooth Software Rollout The firm’s implementation approach was to phase-in the new audit process based on industry groups. The first selected was their Investment Company industry group. Rook and Lambert chose champions on that team to help develop their audit template ahead of time. The champions, along with Lambert and Rook, then spent two to three days coming up with commonalities in the industry to build the investment company audit template before migrating the data. Next up was the Service Organization Controls (SOC) practice group, followed by the Employee Benefit Plan group, Government and Nonprofit, and finally the Commercial Industry group which includes manufacturing and distribution, oil and gas, and construction companies. Their entire rollout took approximately one year, and, with each rollout, the matching KBA titles and lessons learned along the way were incorporated. “We wanted to take what we saw as the best audit products and approach available on the market, and then use that Integrated Audit Approach to drive efficiencies. I think we’ve achieved that.” — Rook
  5. 5. Tips for Implementing New Audit Software Lambert and Rook learned a lot through their software migration, and offer the following tips to colleagues considering and undertaking a similar move. 1. Know that it will take time to do the pre-work. “Really acknowledge the time that the pre-work requires ahead of the rollouts. Everything you do up front pays off tremendously on the back end.” — Lambert 2. Consider rolling out by industry team. “This is really important to avoid taking on too much at once. Learn as much as possible from each industry rollout about the best implementation process, and incorporate those lessons learned with the next industry rollout.” — Rook 3. Create the industry binder templates ahead of time. “Some leaders spent more time on the templates than others, which paid back enormously for those industry groups. You’re going to appreciate all the time you spent on making really good binder templates.” — Lambert 4. Take the training seriously and ensure that all levels participate. “We had some industry groups with partners that didn’t attend the training, and the migration didn’t go nearly as smoothly for them. It’s important that leadership attend and that they require the staff to make the most of every training session.” — Rook 5. Update the binders annually and continue to improve on your use of the solutions. “We do annual audit level training for the first four years of your career with our firm, and we use Wolters Kluwer for that training. Additionally, the industry group leaders update our Knowledge Coach templates on an annual basis to keep them current and constantly improved. Executing interim test work and training is important to make sure you stay ahead of the curve.” — Rook Weaver Delivers More Effective, More Efficient Audits with Wolters Kluwer’s Integrated Audit Approach 5 Weaver’s National and Local Rankings based on 2015 data #3 Largest Tarrant County Accounting Firms by Fort Worth Business Press #5 Largest San Antonio Accounting Firms by San Antonio Business Journal #6 Largest Accounting Firms in Texas by Houston Business Journal #9 Largest North Texas Accounting Firms by Dallas Business Journal #10 Largest Houston-Area Public Accounting Firms by Houston Business Journal #13 Largest Austin Accounting Firms by Austin Business Journal #38 Top 50 Firms by INSIDE Public Accounting #39 Top 100 Firms by Accounting Today BEST of the BEST Firms to Watch by INSIDE Public Accounting
  6. 6. When you have to be right © 2016 CCH Incorporated and its affiliates. All rights reserved. Contact information: Wolters Kluwer 2700 Lake Cook Road Riverwoods, IL 60015 United States 800-739-9998 Please visit CCHGroup.com/QualityAudit for more information. 2/16 2016-0014-3

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