Audit Quality Perspectives from Our CEO

June 2017

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Despite a dynamic business and political environment marked by post-election speculation as to the impact on the financial reporting regulatory environment and global markets, BDO USA, LLP (BDO)1 is keeping our focus. We continue to promote a strategy committed to the delivery of high quality audits that meet the public’s demand for compliance, transparency, and integrity of the financial statements on which we opine.

In 2016, we first shared Our Approach to Audit Quality through the lens of BDO’s strategic plan “CLIMB” – each letter representing a key pillar of an internal ramework through which our firm addresses dynamic external factors: Culture and Unity; Leadership and Accountability; Innovation; Market Prominence; and Best in Class. In our 2017 report, we emphasize the specific areas of interest where we, at our core, continue to make
concerted efforts. With the goal of helping our professionals and our clients thrive every day, we are aligning our practices and services accordingly.

By focusing first on our people, we foster a teaming environment to best serve our clients. We have intensified our drive towards creating a Culture of world-class talent procurement and retention. We have grown to a firm of approximately 6,500 professionals, increasing client service staff and seasoned partners, experienced in key technical areas and industries from public company practice matters to cybersecurity services. As our investment in top talent increases, so too does our investment in the infrastructure that supports our professionals in the form of messaging, training, systems, and tools. These activities permeate our over 60 offices and help unite us as one firm.

Governance is a key focus for our firm’s leaders. As such, Leadership and accountability at BDO has undergone a significant transformation, resulting in a management structure better aligned to support our business lines, regional practices and client industry concentration. Our firm has put into place tools, including a leadership platform, to help us focus the activities of our current leaders and develop our future leaders. Concurrently, our board has committed itself to a continuing education program to remain in step with corporate governance developments and oversight of risk.

Continued Innovation at BDO has taken the form of increased investment in evolving services, technologies, and analytical techniques to make audits more effective and efficient. In addition, we have placed even greater importance on ensuring our professionals have the requisite knowledge to address changing standards, regulatory complexities, and our expanding industry practices.

Our Market prominence has been complemented by the completion of seven major practice expansions in 2016 along with increased global capabilities and resources to assist clients with international operations. Additionally, through the creation of centers of excellence, we are committing to keep our clients informed on time-sensitive matters of importance to their businesses. As we continue to increase the experience level of and resources for our practice professionals, we are well positioned to serve our base of public company audit clients, which averaged over 380 in 2016 (inclusive of issuer employee benefit plan engagements).

Finally, our drive to be Best in class underscores the culmination of the aforementioned activities of our strategic plan in delivering high quality-centric audit service. We have placed a premium on the work of our national and local Audit Quality Team and Networks and are actively building these resources. We challenge our professionals to anticipate trends and provide them with opportunities to continue to contribute in meaningful ways to both the firm and to the audit profession through international and national office secondments, fellowships with regulators and standard setters, industry and standard-setting task forces, forums with board of directors and financial executives, and other means of service.

Building upon our 2016 BDO’s Approach to Audit Quality, the following report examines BDO’s specific areas of focus on audit quality for 2017 and beyond. We believe our commitment to our overall strategy, investments, and actions enables us to significantly increase our attention and focus on audit quality.

Wayne-headshot.jpgWayne Berson
Chief Executive Officer of BDO USA, LLP and Chairman of the Global Board of Directors at BDO International Ltd. 

1 BDO is the U.S. member firm of BDO International Limited, a UK Company limited by guarantee, and forms part of the international BDO network of independent member firms.