Fully automated audits unlikely, says BGL
BGL managing director Ron Lesh says fully automated audits are something the SMSF industry is unlikely to ever achieve, despite recent suggestions to the contrary.
One of the major issues of achieving a fully automated audit process is the fact everyone must have certification for their data, Mr Lesh told SMSF Adviser.
“We’re all relying on external feeds, so we’re relying on stuff coming from banks and brokers and all sorts of places, and unfortunately it’s just not that reliable,” he said.
Mr Lesh said while it possible to certify that the data from your own organisation is correct, it isn’t possible to certify that the data from other companies is correct.
“None of the banks have certification for their data and most of their systems have holes in them,” said Mr Lesh.
“We find error after error in the data feeds coming from the banks and other [firms].”
Mr Lesh said he therefore remains sceptical of the audit process ever being fully automated.
“I think we’ll see auditing that’s very close to being automated, but I don’t think we’re ever going to see fully automated auditing,” he said.
“I would like to see the banks and financial institutions have better and more reliable systems, that would make it easier for everyone,” he said.
However Mr Lesh said from his understanding data certification is not something any of the banks or larger organisations are working towards at the moment.
“I think that’s a huge problem going forward – [well] certainly at the moment,” he said.
Miranda Brownlee is the deputy editor of SMSF Adviser, which is the leading source of news, strategy and educational content for professionals working in the SMSF sector.
Since joining the team in 2014, Miranda has been responsible for breaking some of the biggest superannuation stories in Australia, and has reported extensively on technical strategy and legislative updates. Miranda has also directed SMSF Adviser's print publication for several years.
Miranda also has broad business and financial services reporting experience, having written for titles including Investor Daily, ifa and Accountants Daily.