CohnReznick teams with Wolters Kluwer for audits

CohnReznick, a Top 100 Firm, has picked Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting’s Integrated Audit Approach system to provide audit services to clients in its 26 offices.

Wolters Kluwer has been adding more knowledge management and data analytics features to its audit software. The company showcased the software last week at its CCH Connections user conference in Miami Beach, where it made the announcement.

“We’ve been working on not only the data analytics, but also the predictive analytics and the tools that will accelerate it,” Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting, North America, CEO Jason Marx told Accounting Today. “The financial prep tools we showed at out kiosk are sort of version 1.0 of some of the capabilities in terms of groupings of the things that we can do. The next iterations will start to fully embrace more of the learning tools that we can bring in. Rather than having to identify a group over time, in the next iteration the system will begin to learn from that and do that for you, which saves even more time and more of the workflow.”

By taking a standard approach across its offices, CohnReznick hopes to make its audit processes more efficient so it can adapt in the future to perform consistent quality audits in accordance with AICPA standards. CohnReznick is working on achieving an “Audit of the Future” strategy.

Wolters Kluwer HQ
Wolters Kluwer HQ

“The Integrated Audit Approach from Wolters Kluwer will allow us to develop a more efficient and intelligent audit that leverages available technologies to enable the firm’s professionals to enhance their focus on being trusted advisors, and for our clients to continue benefiting from world class client service,” said CohnReznick managing partner of assurance Robert G. Hilbert in a statement.

Wolters Kluwer is competing with other audit software developers, such as CaseWare, which has been working to create a system called Dynamic Audit Solution with the American Institute of CPAs’ CPA.com technology unit. Wolters Kluwer noted that its Integrated Audit Platform adheres to the AICPA risk assessment standards. It includes several components : CCH ProSystem fx Knowledge Coach, CCH ProSystem fx Engagement, CCH Accounting Research Manager and TeamMate Analytics.

The offering could help CohnReznick compete better with the Big Four firms, which have been leveraging data analytics in their audit software to identify outlier information and work with larger sample sizes. Deloitte too has begun selling its own auditing software to smaller firms.

“It pushes the market in a good way,” said Marx. “We work very closely with the Big Four too, so I think those kinds of things are good.”

The technology could allow firms to provide what is being referred to as “continuous audits.”

“That continuous audit methodology is less about the checklists and more about the data,” said Marx. “We understand the tasks and the checklists. It’s really about understanding the data and how that works through the audit methodology.”

Wolters Kluwer has also been partnering with other companies on audit technology, as it did last year in licensing Validis software to create CCH Audit Accelerator. “We’ve partnered with Validis to help bring in the general ledger data at the transaction level,” said Jim McGinnis, EVP and GM, North America, Medium and Large segment, at Wolters Kluwer Tax & Accounting. “That data feeds the platform and then enables TeamMate Analytics and audit and other processes. We’ll do lots more of those things in the future.”

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