I didn’t really reinvent the wheel here. I did the procedures you’d do on any old audit file. I vouched, tied things in, sent confirmations, scanned the GL, did cut-off testing etc.
The thing I learned the most, and developed the greatest appreciation for, was the relationship between the culmination of all the field work and the overall tone of the file.
My coworker, who was previously my audit senior, always told me to be meticulous when preparing my working papers. It pissed me off. I didn’t see the value. If I did the procedures, and my procedures had a purpose and a conclusion, then what was the point of doing all the extra work? The point is the tone. If everything in your file was done meticulously, then your file will appear meticulous. If everything ties in, all your schedules have a purpose and conclusion, if your leadsheets tie into your financial statements and your hand writing is legible (this is very important) your file as a whole will stand out.
And the best part about this? Your partners will be unable to specifically explain why your file was so good. They won’t because nothing specifically stood out. You didn’t do one thing amazingly, you just held yourself to a higher standard, which permeated your file and became thematic when it was reviewed. Taking this approach, it will be technically impossible to sight a specific item that can account for the quality of your file. People will just see it as exceptionally well done.
In other news, I’m hooked on the new t-pain cd. Damn I love t-pain. “love dem sparkly pants” hahaha (probably the funniest interview with a rapper I’ve ever seen, lil wayne’s interview was just creepy).