‘Wikipedia for auditors’: AUASB launches interactive portal
The Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board has launched its first fully interactive website, in a move described as a “game changer” for the audit profession.
Following 18 months of development, more than 1,500 pages containing the 57 AUASB standards have now been converted to fully accessible and interactive content with easy-to-use active links to useful references that make the site quick to navigate.
The new website also now includes a powerful search capability and the ability to quickly promote new and updated standards.
AUASB chair Bill Edge said the board worked closely with the profession to develop the new website after feedback revealed difficulties in accessing individual PDF documents.
“Our job is to set the standards and help people use those standards and we knew we had to dramatically improve the cumbersome way auditors currently access standards using PDFs on our existing website,’’ Mr Edge said.
“This portal is a quantum shift. It’s like Wikipedia for auditors. By making it much easier for the more than 20,000 auditing professionals to access and use the standards, it will make audits better.’’
Claire Grayston, CPA Australia’s policy adviser for audit and assurance, said the impact of the portal on smaller practices, in particular, would be “game changing”.
“Now that the standards are fully digitised, they’re highly accessible to all practitioners no matter their level of resourcing. It’s a win for the audit profession and ultimately their clients, as better access to the standards supports better audit quality,” Ms Grayston said.
“In the past, our members have spent a lot of time searching individual PDF documents to find the information they needed but still ran the risk of overlooking key requirements.
“The new search functionality allows users to pinpoint the relevant standards quickly, then navigate within each standard and between standards easily. This alone will save auditors and other users a huge amount of time.’’
Likewise, Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand reporting and assurance leader Amir Ghandar believes the new portal will ultimately help improve audit quality.
“We welcome the AUASB’s efforts to make it easier and more user-friendly for auditors navigating the audit standards using technology,” Mr Ghandar said. “This is a critical step forward towards better implementation of the standards and constantly improving audit quality.’’