By Hayes Knight – 7 December 2010

An interim visit is a way of splitting the audit into two stages and we have successfully been doing this for a number of schools over the last few years.

This is for a range of reasons:

To ensure the introduction and impact of the new auditing standards (more on this later) does not delay audits for the 2010 year end;

Spreading the overall impact on your team;

Delivering you a better service; by splitting the audit in two we will ease the workload pressure in our peak season of April and May next year; and

To assist more schools by giving an earlier heads-up if there are any systems or control issues that need addressing. After all, our aim is to go beyond the numbers.

At the interim visit we update our understanding of your systems and test them to check they are operating as we understand them.  This includes updating and testing your system controls around receipts and payments, locally raised funds, use of credit cards, if any, and general ledger controls.  We normally also review minutes of board meetings, and test fixed asset additions and disposals.

Many of the schools that we audit will be used to having an interim visit from our team from prior years.  However this year we are visiting more schools for interim visits. For schools that have not had interim audit visits in the past please rest assured that there are no adverse risk assessments or matters of concern that have meant your school has been selected.

Our aim is to make the annual financial statement audit process as painless and useful to your school as possible.  Increasing the amount of interim audit visits, we believe, will improve workflow in the peak period.

The benefit to you is that it should help make the final visits more efficient and shorter than in the past!