An associate auditor is responsible for performing tests and reviews of a company’s internal control systems - and the manner in which they are conducted - to ensure accuracy and effectiveness; they also must ensure that requirements of a company’s audit control systems, industry audit expectations, and legal requirements are met. Corporations, non-profit agencies, and government agencies often employ associate auditors, as do outside accounting firms hired to review companies' financial statements.
Associate auditors generally perform their duties under the direction of a senior auditor, and they are expected to apply generally accepted auditing standards (GAAS) to make certain that management's expectations and government requirements are met. They also make recommendations for potential or required areas of improvements. Additionally, associate auditors may review company policies regarding safety expectations and legal requirements as specified by the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
In virtually all cases, associate auditors work indoors in an office. If employed by an outside accounting firm, they often work in an office within that firm, and they may also work on-site in an office provided by the company whose materials they are auditing. Generally, associate auditors work a daytime shift, although this may vary depending on the time of year and deadlines for filing regular reports.
The educational requirement for the associate auditor position varies, although most have earned at least a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Many associate auditors also have advanced degrees in accounting, audits, or tax-related specialties, particularly if their position has significant responsibilities. Often associate auditors have gained their certified public accountant – or CPA – license as well, which is also useful to advance higher in the field as they gain employment experience; it is often mandatory for supervisory positions.
Associate Auditor Tasks
May recommend improvements in operations and procedures for compliance.
Participate in the preparation and execution of audit work plans.
Perform and report on financial and operational audits.
Determine the extent of further investigation needed.