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Audit tasks refers to those task under which financial statements of the company is verified and checked by the auditors in order to know about whether the final accounts are indicating the true and fair view of the company's financial position or not. Current report is covering the meaning of accounting principles and importance of these concepts in maintaining final records. This report will also discuss about types of different accounting records and their specific purpose and uses for the organisation (Carpenter and Feroz, 2001). Next segment of the report will cover the annual report of TESCO 2014, through which meaning and components of business risk facing by TESCO will have been described. TESCO is a multinational retail company occupied third largest retailer in the world position. There are various control systems in order to reduce business risk will also have been described and evaluation of fraud risk is also discussing in this projects (TESCO Plc, 2015). At last this report will also covered an audit plan for FA Jet limite
Accounting records are those sources of information and documents which can be used for verifying and auditing financial statements and also indicator of financial position of the company. There are various accounting records which a firm must have to maintain is Journals, ledger, trial balance, income statement, balance sheet and cash flow statement (Wilkin And Chenhall, 2010). Each financial record is having their own purpose and uses in order to indicate correct position of the enterprise. Purpose and use of each accounting records can be understood as follows:
Journals: It is chronological record of day to day financial transactions of the company. In journals entries are recorded by double entry book keeping system under which two accounts are involved in each financial transaction (Bushman and et. al., 2004). Purpose of maintaining journals is to keep daily record of day to day transaction of the company so that any kind of error can be find out for the first time. Use of preparing journals is that it make easier to prepare ledger and financial statements. Another use of journal is to keep systematic record of all the events which have occur in the business.
General Ledger: General ledger is a principle book which records summary of all the transactions that are recorded in journals and can be measure in quantitative terms. Purpose of maintaining ledger account is to keep systematic and summarised record of each account in order to make use of these account at any time if required (Bell, Landsman and Shackelford, 2001). Use of ledger is to formulate budget and also helpful in providing necessary information in order to conducting research and audit for the company.
Trail balance: Trail balance is accumulations of all ledger balances into debit and credit sides. Purpose of preparing trial balance is check mathematical correctness of accounting data and system. Data of trial balance is used for preparation of financial statements for the firm and available them data in very simple form (Romney, 2006). He data of trail balance also used in order to make audit of financial statements.
Income statement: Income statement is the statement that indicates the profitability of the company over a specific accounting period. The purpose behind preparing income statement is to make aware its investors about the profitability condition of the enterprise over a accounting period (Hall, 2012). It can use by the bankers and auditors in order to ensure its true picture of profitability conditions.
Balance sheet: balance sheet is the statement that shows the financial position of the company. The purpose of preparing balance is to convey its financial position to its stakeholders. On the other hand balance sheet is used by all the stakeholders of the company who is having interest in the functioning of the business. Balance sheet data are also used to verify actual position of the firm by the auditors (Gelinas, Dull and Wheeler, 2011). It can also be used for the purpose of ratio analysis for the organisation.
Cash flow statement: it is the statement which indicates the incoming and outgoing of cash from the business over an accounting period. It shows liquidity position of the company by analysing cash outflows and cash inflows over a particular period of time. Purpose of making cash flow statements is to make aware its stakeholder about the actual liquidity position of the company and its actual earning in cash over a specific period of time (Wilkin And Chenhall, 2010). It can be used in anticipating future cash flows and at the same time also helps in formulating annual budgets for the company.
Fundamental accounting concepts refers to the rules that must be followed by the accountants while maintaining accounting records and preparing financial statements for the company. Fundamentals accounting concepts has broad nature as it includes five terms such as basic accounting principles, elements of accounting, accounting equation, double entry accounting system and the accounting cycle (Carpenter and Feroz, 2001). The combination of these five components can be said as fundamental accounting concepts for preparing final accounts.
Basic accounting principles: Basic accounting principles refer to the assumption that should be kept in mind while preparing, presenting and interpreting the financial data. These basic principles includes accrual, going concern, accounting entity, time period assumption and Monetary unit assumption concepts (Wilkin And Chenhall, 2010). On the basis of these factors, can manage different and complex accounting transactions in order to generate efficient information about financial performance of company. These principles assists organization in presentation of business information related to particular accounting period with an effective manner.
Elements of accounting: Another component of accounting concept is elements of accounts which includes classification of financial data into the terms Assets, liabilities, capital, income and expenditures (Mauldin, Crain, and Mounce, 2000). So, external user and manager of firm can easily evaluate financial position of organization. All these elements determine information about strengths, probability, liquidity, expenditure etc. of business entity.
Accounting equation: It indicates the matching concept of accounting principles. This concept shows that total of assets will be equal to the total of liabilities (Bennett, Bradbury and Prangnell, 2006). It helps mangers in order to maintain proper balance between income and expenditures of firm.
Double entry accounting system: It can be considered as particular method which must be followed in preparing final accounts. This concept tells that every financial transaction has put impact on two accounts in which one would be credit and another would be debit (Bennett, Bradbury And Prangnell, 2006.). It records financial transactions in a systematic manner as well as chronological order along with suitable narration of the each financial transaction. It not only keeps each financial transaction of firm, but also each aspect of the transaction. It also helps managers in order to ensure about arithmetical accuracy of the financial data.
Accounting cycle: It is a systematic procedure of maintaining final accounts of the firm which includes collection of data, processing of data, presentation of data and at last interpretation of data (O'Donnell And Schultz Jr, 2005). By following all stages, organization can collect and record each transaction effectively.
Accounting concepts is having great importance on functioning of business operations and accounting procedure. Through accounting concepts accountants can easily deals with entrepreneur and its capital as per separate entity concept of accounting principles (Vamosi, Pierce And Slotkin, 2004). These concepts increases the trust of its stakeholders in the final accounts of the firm as it is ensuring preparation of final accounting in systematic manner and within legal framework. Accounting concepts provides direction to the accountant in order to maintain final accounts for the company and also reduces the complexity of data in terms of having fixed procedure or assumption in formulating financial statements (Weygandt and et. al., 2010). Error in formulating final accounts can also be reduced in order to create transparency in whole accounting system. As these concepts indicate that asses side of balance sheet should be equal to the liability side of balance sheet, so this concept helps an accountant to identify any mistake occur in order to maintain final account. These concepts act as a proof of accuracy for financial statements as the accounts are to be maintained according to these concepts (Weygandt and et. al., 2002). Through accounting concepts final accounts can easily be prepared without any confusion and misconception. As accounting concepts describes that accounts should be maintain within an accounting cycle form so this can also be helpful for the firm in order to maintain final accounts in a accounting cycle period. This can help out an accountant to orderly maintaining the accounting statements. By following these principles company can gain stakeholders trust and satisfaction which creates company's goodwill in the markets.
So ultimately it can be said that there is a great importance of accounting concepts in preparing final accounts and make company's final accounts trustable among its stakeholders (Jasch, 2008). Accounting concepts provide base for maintaining final accounts of the firm within the specific period of time. Every organisation adopts different accounting concepts and assumptions while preparing final records; this will create little conflicts but still have great importance for the company.
Accounting is the systematic process of identifying, recording, summarising, classifying accounting records in order to make final accounts of the company over a specific period of time (Carpenter and Feroz, 2001). Nature and structure of accounting gets influenced by various factors. These factors can be understood as follows:
Size and operation of the business: organisation's size and operations have great influence on accounting nature and structure. If the size of the business is large then accounting structure will be more classified on another hand if size of the business is small then accounting structure will also be less classified. The way in which a business is functioning is also have great impact on accounting structure and nature (Weygandt and et. al., 2010). Every industry is having different methods of operations and for this purpose require different types of accounting system. So this can be influence the nature of accounting means influence the way in which financial transaction can be recorded and summarise.
Perception: Perception of accountant also have great influence on accounting system of the company. If employees of the organisation resist the changes in accounting systems then the structure of accounting will be in traditional manner and nature of accounting will be conservative only (Bennett, Bradbury And Prangnell, 2006.). On the other hand if the employees are optimistic towards the changes then structure of the accounting will be more advanced and nature of accounting will be more advanced. This is how perception of employees can have great influence on structure or nature of accounting.
Level of training: While installing accounting system in the organisation it will have great impact on structure and nature of accounting. For the purpose of deploying accounting system in the company training to the users become necessary for the enterprise (Johnstone, 2000). So the level of training provided and level of knowledge acquired by the employee also have great impact on accounting system.
Availability of resources: This is another factor that have great impact on accounting structure is availability of resources. There can be various actions can be taken in order to improve structure of the company but if the firm is not having sufficient resources with it then all the action plan can be worth less (Eilifsen, Knechel and Wallage, 2001). So this is the essential element in order to formulate structure and nature of accounting. So availability of the resources is must in order to design nature and structure of accounting.
Quality of information: What type of information is providing to the accountant is also influence the nature and structure of the accounting system. If information are of good quality means accurate in nature then accounting result will also be accurate and indicate true position of the company (O'Donnell And Schultz Jr, 2005). On the other hand if information feed in the accounting system is not true then result will also be false. So this is how quality of information influence structure and nature of the accounting system.
These were the factors that must have been considered by the accountant while designing the nature and structure of accounting system because it has great influence on formulating accounting nature and structure.
Business risk refers to the probability of earning less than estimated or desired profit over a particular period of time. According to the annual report of TESCO Company it can be found that the company is having different components of business risk which are discussing as below:
Financial Risk: This risk is related with the starting new business when the company raising funds bank loans, creditors etc (Ericson and Doyle, 2004). In TESCO financial risk is there in terms of being failure of financial strategy formulated by top management. The company has to suffer financial risk in case of financial objectives will not be achieved or being failure in achieving financial plans for the year (Sadgrove, 2005). Financial risk also includes liquidity risk, interest rate risk, credit risk etc.
Product risk: Product risk is associated with failure to offering desired product and services to customers. TESCO is also facing product risk in terms of selling damaged product to the customers (Annual report and financial statements, 2014). By offering defective products to the customers, company can lose its reputation in mind of customers and this will considered as product risk for the firm.
Technological Risk: Another risk from which TESCO can suffer is technological risk. This type of risk is related with defection in installing technology or deployment in technology. As digital market grows, in case of any lack in technological advancement will directly affects the profitability of the company (TESCO Plc, 2015). An insufficient investment in deploying new technology can also be a cause of bearing risk for the company. So TESCO is also having technological risk as it now enters in digital market.
People risk: People risk is also a part of business risk as the business is totally depend on peoples that are associated with the organisation. Same risk can be beard by the TESCO in case of fails to attract or retain employees of the company (Evaluate business risk, 2015). If Manager of TESCO cannot lead the employees and fails to make them motivated then it can directly affects the functioning of the business. Another people risk which a company is facing is lack of qualified employees in the firm, this can also be a matter of risk for the company.
Political risk: Political risk is also a important component of business risk as it is related with political and regulatory environment of the company. TESCO is also having political risk in terms of operating its operations in various countries so the functioning of the company can be impacted by legal and regulatory changes in different countries (Rittenberg, Johnstone and Gramling, 2011). Many market s has restricted the landscape regulatory which is a cause of risk for the firm.
So these were the important business risk components which can be faced by the company in terms of failure to meet desired results.
Control systems refer to the device or group of device which helps the company against business risk and reduce the probability of being failure. TESCO is also adopting various control systems in order to reduce business risk of the firm (Annual report and financial statements, 2014). For reducing financial risk the enterprise higher authority of the company is keeping regular check over the financial strategy of the firm . Gearing and debt management are also reviewed by board committee in order to control financial risk. In order to reduce product risk technical teams of the company has implemented and monitored group product policy and changes the way of doing work. Appropriate control has been placed in the way of product development continue monitoring has been done against product risk (TESCO Plc, 2015). Product surveillance programmes also get deployed in practice in order to save the firm from product risk. Any defect in product risk can create bad impression in the market so TESCO is being very careful about product associated risk.
Another risk which is facing by TESCO is technological risk and in order to reduce the technical risk IT technology of the TESCO is reviewed and approved by the executive committee in order to check that investment in IT is meaningful or not. It is also reviewed that customers are having good experience with online shopping or not and product innovation is helping the firm in improving its performance or not (Husted, 2005). Efficiency and integrity of IT infrastructure and data are being controlled by Group technology committee of the firm. For this purpose Wide area network infrastructure has been improved by the TESCO and IT systems get centralised and standardized across international operations.
In order to reduce people risk people policies, procedures and risks are regularly reviewed by TESCO's people Matters Group (PMG). Various data collection and feedback collection process are implemented by the PMG team in order to achieve efficiency in the employees and achieve the targets of the firm. The key objective of executive committee is talent planning and people management. For controlling political risk TESCO is getting engaged with governmental and nongovernmental organisation in very optimistic and positive way in order to get defended from political changes (Knechel, 2007). TESCO bank executive get commenced with UK groceries supply code of practices in order to ensure fairly treatment with the customers. So this is how TESCO is adopting various control systems on order to reduce the business risk and moving its head towards the accomplishments of business targets.
Fraud risk refers to the probability of being victimised by another in order to damage services and property. TESCO is also facing the risk of fraud in terms of developing new platforms and growing in different geographical areas (O'Donnell and Schultz Jr, 2005). This could be increase the probability of being dishonest by the suppliers towards the organisation. As the company is rapidly growing in new areas and earning good profitability in the market so this increases the fraud and dishonest behaviour of employees, customers or its stakeholders towards the organisation. So this is how TESCO can face face risk of fraud within the company (Eilifsen, Knechel and Wallage, 2001). In order to control this type of danger company is using diversified strategy with internal control and improve transparency in TESCO pension investments. On the other hand doing modification in these pension plans with a view to reducing the pension risk such as the last modification has been done in 2012 in order to overcome inflation risks.
Apart from all these control system TESCO has to organise fraud awareness training programme for employees, managers and executives in order to detect the fraud of these parties. By this training programme employees of the organisation can get to know about the actions which can be considered as the fraud, so this will help the firm to prevent fraud practices happening in the company (Johnstone, 2000). Another mechanism for avoid fraud risk is to build anti fraud control team which keep their eyes on functioning of the employees and monitor them on regular basis, this can also prevent TESCO from risk of fraud. Communication channels in the organisation should be actively formed so that management can share information about fraudsters where needed this can also be helpful in reduce fraud risk and detect any kind of fraud takes place in the company (Annual report and financial statements, 2014). The firm has to organise internal as well as external audit programme within the specific period of time this can help the company to detect any fraud practices occurring in the enterprise. Audit programmes basically refers to the process under which final accounts of the company has been checked by auditors in order to know about accuracy of final records maintained by the company (TESCO Plc, 2015). Through internal and external audit programme the firm can find out the aspect where fraud had been conducted by the employees. The firm must have to strongly activate the fraud management team in the organisation which can be prevent the firm by facing risk of fraud within the organisation.
So these were the control systems which are following by the TESCO and some other mechanism which can be adopted by the company in order to reduce risk of fraud (Evaluate business risk, 2015). It is the risk which can directly put impact on company's reputation in the market, which is known as reputation risk of the firm.
Audit plan is prepared to determine direction of manner in which audit can be conducted. It can be said that the audit plan helps in conducting review of business planned in an appropriate manner. The audit plan provides evidence at each step of audit so as t improve business performance. Moreover, the planning helps in reducing costs of audit to be conducted. The audit plan provides a clear understanding of audit to be conducted to the clients and auditors into consideration (Audit Plan, 2015). This in turn helps in clarifying all doubts may arise during course of audit. It is through an efficient audit plan that all sort of misunderstanding can be avoided on part of clients and auditors. In present case the audit of FA Jet ltd is to be conducted so as to evaluate business performance. The audit plan for same is presented underneath.
Audit objectives: The audit is to be conducted for FA Jet ltd. so as to assess the performance of the business unit (Strathern, 2000). Moreover, it is through audit that the organizations’ effectiveness can be evaluated. The objectives of audit presented herewith are detailed below:
Scope of Audit: It is essential to identify scope of the audit conducted by the organization. The outcomes developed by present audit supports business strategies for long run. The organization is able to develop successful operational and reporting strategies on the basis of audit plan. It can be said that audit is considered to be highly significant for supporting business operations in long run (Rittenberg, Johnstone and Gramling, 2011). Henceforth, it can be said that the audit helps in identifying loopholes into system. It helps in planning appropriate control mechanism for the purpose of conducting business operations.
Duration for Audit: It is essential to set the deadline or duration in which audit is to be completed. In present case the audit will be completed in duration of 2.5 months. The pre-specified duration helps in completing audit on time with efficiency.
Process of audit: The audit process starts with deeply evaluating all business operations. The accounting or annual reports of the organization is evaluated deeply so as to understand financial performance of the organization. It is through evaluation of accounting records that the practices adopted by business unit can be evaluated. The business operations also need to be evaluated so as to check effectiveness of all operations (Beattie, Fearnley and Brandt, 2001). Once the operations and financial records of the organization are evaluated, the loopholes into system can be identifies. The audit conducted emphasizes on not only identifying wrong practices but also inefficiencies on part of the organization. Henceforth, once the business performance is evaluated the loopholes into system can be identified. Thereafter, the appropriate control mechanism is devised to change the operations (Vamosi, Pierce and Slotkin, 2004). The audit report is prepared with various recommendations for overall development of the business unit. The report is thereafter presented to management so as to develop and implement business strategies for long term success.
Risk associated: The audit conducted helps in identifying risk associated with activities of business operations. Any kind of financial, operational, strategic and compliance risk that forms part of business operations are identified through audit conducted. The financial risks arise as a result of wrong investment and financing decisions (Mauldin, Crain and Mounce, 2000). It is through audit that the management of financial resources can be judged. Operational risk arises with inefficiency in conducting and administering business operations. The audit conducted helps in identifying all kind of risk that the organization is exposed to (Husted, 2005). This in turn helps in taking appropriate measures to support business operations and achieve success in long run.
Materiality: During the course of audit it is ensured that the misstatement, omission or errors that form part of financial report should be in material in nature (Hanlon, Krishnan, and Mills, 2012). The errors, omissions or misstatement are considered to be material in nature only when it has an impact on business operations or stakeholders’ decision. Any kind of errors that does not cause any harm or affect economic decisions are considered immaterial in nature and ignored during the process of audit.
It is essential to adopt the appropriate audit tests for the purpose of achieving audit objectives. The audit test emphasizes on identifying the practices adopted on part of auditors for the purpose of evaluating business performance.
Risk assessment: It is through assessment of risk that the business performance can be analysed and evaluated. It is the tool that emphasizes on evaluating the level of risk encountered by the organization at whole. The technique helps in evaluating business strategies and issues faced by the organization (Chan and Mo, 2002). It is seen that the organization is exposed to different kind of risks such as financial, operational, strategic and compliance risk. Moreover, the organization faces any of risks only when inefficient strategies are developed and implemented on part of the organization (Sadgrove, 2005). The risk assessment helps in conducting an evaluation of business strategies and utilization of resources on part of the organization. It can be therefore said that the risk assessment is one of the method to judge business performance and conduct the audit for same.
Documentation: Every transaction or activity of the organization needs to be recorded. The process of documentation involves record keeping and preparation of reports during the audit process. It is through documentation that the evidence for audit process can be generated. Moreover, documentation helps in justifying the basis on which audit is conducted. The audit tests as documentation emphasizes on conducting audit process with help of transactions’ documents (Wilkin and Chenhall, 2010). It can be said that the documentation helps in conducting audit with the assistance of evidence created for each of business transactions. It can be said that the audit process is highly dependent on documentation. This in turn results in supporting audit process and generating valid and reliable outcomes.
Substantive testing: It is considered as systmatic audit procedure that evaluates different accounting statements as well as supporting documentation to identify errors. These tests are played important role as evidence to support the assertion that the financial data of an organization are complete, valid, and accurate (Chan and Mo, 2002). In this process, auditor carries out many substantive testes such as conducting a bank confirmation to test ending cash balances, contact customers in order to confirm about accounts receivable balances are correct, can physically match fixed assets with fixed asset records, contacting to lenders for confirmation of loan balances etc.
Test of Details: In this process, an auditor can carry out two types of test such as substantive tests of Transactions and tests of details of account balances and disclosures. In the process of substantive tests, audit conducts test for errors or fraud in individual transactions (Hanlon, Krishnan, and Mills, 2012). On the other hand, tests of details of account balances and disclosures is used to focus on the items that are contained in the financial statement account balances and disclosures. So, auditor can easily assess different kinds of financial data.
The audit process emphasizes on judging the practices adopted by the organization in reporting its financial statements. It is essential to maintain continuous record during the course of audit. The record keeping is considered to be essential element for developing an evidence of final outcomes or audit reports. Types of records that need to be maintained as part of audit process are determined below in detail.
Documentation: It is essential to maintain records through accumulation of relevant documents. The audit process is conducted with the help of documents related to financial statements. The company’s financial statement such as cash flow statement, balance sheet and income statement are utilized for the purpose of conducting audit. Besides, the audit process takes into consideration original documents such as checks, invoices, time cards and all records relevant to business transactions (O'Donnell and Schultz, 2005). This in turn helps in accumulating evidences for all the entire audit process. Audited financial statements are demanded by various stakeholders due to in-depth record keeping for all accounting transactions. Moreover, the efficient record keeping helps in reducing the cost of audit and increasing speed of transactions. It can be said that the documentation is one of the essential element for supporting audit process. The auditors emphasizes on maintaining records of each transaction and evaluating recorded financial statements.
Working papers: The auditors emphasizes on creating an organized record for audit process. Working papers are structured and organized report that is presented on part of auditors. They are considered to be outcomes developed as a result of audit process and serves as an evidence for policies and procedures adopted by the organization (Eilifsen, Knechel and Wallage, 2001). The working papers provide a final analysis and recommendations on part of auditors. It can be said that the working papers provides an overview of business operations and its reporting standards.
To: Board of Directors of FA Jet Ltd
Date: 23rd March 2015
Executive summary: The financial statements and accounting practices for the year ended 31st December 2013 of FA Jet Ltd has been reviewed by the audit team. As the financial statements were prepared by the accounts department of FA Jet Ltd, hence the accountability is held with the company management. The audit team holds the responsibility of analysing the financial statements only (Wilkin and Chenhall, 2010).
Scope of Audit report: The audit has been conducted in accordance with the Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAAP) and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). These standards are assists us to plan and perform the audit in order to obtain sufficient evidence to form a reasonable basis for our conclusions and findings to achieve the objectives (Bushman and et. al., 2004). For the purpose of achieving the objectives of audit report we follow certain procedures which includes the following:
The recommendations made during the audit which must be implemented in the process are mentioned separately in the report. There was recommendation regarding the recognition of income which required to be implemented in the balance sheet.
It can be concluded form the external audit of FA Jet Ltd that financial statements prepared and provided by the accounts department represents true and transparent financial data. The financial statements are prepared in accordance with the accounting standards and principles.
The letter of representation is provided in respect with the financial audit of FA Jet Ltd. for the financial year ended 31 December 2013. The purpose of the external audit by FA Jet Ltd is to obtain true and fair opinion of auditor in respect with the financial health and reporting of the company.
The finance and accounts department of the organisation has duly collected, recorded and prepared the financial statements that represents each transaction occurred during the financial period of 2012-2013 for which the audit is requested (Cartier, 2009). The company management has ensured the preparation of financial statements which are - balance sheet, income statement and cash flow statement. In addition to this, other ledger accounts and books are also prepared which record the daily financial transaction of the company. The management assures that statements and books mentioned representing the financial transactions; health and position of company are prepared in accordance with the GAAP and IFRS. The management of FA Jet Ltd. acknowledge the responsibility in preparation, recording and presentation of financial data (Hanlon, Krishnan and Mills, 2012).
Accounting principles and concepts plays very important role in maintaining and recording financial transactions of the company. Accounting records are also very useful for the firm in order to keep systematic record of the business transactions and each record are to maintained by the firm for some specific purpose. Through the study it can also be concluded that there are various factors that have great impact on nature and structure of accounting system. As per the study of TESCO's annual report, there are various business risk which a company has to bear and in order to reduce these risk company is adopting various control systems in its practice. To detect fraud risk is very essential for the firm as it directly affects the reputation the firm. Audit is very essential task for a company in order to maintain its trust ability in the market. As per the audit of FA Jet limited it has been verified that the company is following all rules and regulation according to AS and IFRS. So ultimately it can be concluded that performance of the company is satisfactory and its final accounts are indicating fair and true picture of its financial position.
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