ICAS and the FRC to hold debate on future of the audit profession

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By Andrew Harbison, CA Today

1 November 2016

ICAS and the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) are set to host a debate on the future of audit on 23 November 2016, following the findings of a joint report.

In 2013, two independent research teams where commissioned by ICAS and the FRC to investigate how auditors will need to evolve their skill set to meet the demands of the future.

The findings, published last month in the report ‘Auditor skills in a changing business world’, stated that a frank and open debate about the future of audit was needed.

The report also highlights that, if action is not taken, a skills gap may begin to appear resulting in the audit profession becoming less relevant.

In response to this, ICAS and the FRC are hosting a debate titled ‘Auditor skills in a changing business world – a potential skills gap?’ where the key findings of the report will be covered and the audience will have the opportunity to put their questions to a panel of experts.

Speakers and panel members include:

  • Hywel Ball, Managing Partner, Assurance, UK & Ireland, UK Head of Audit and UK board member, Ernst & Young
  • Richard Fleck CBE, Chair of the joint ICAS/FRC Audit Skills Steering Committee
  • Nick Land, Non-executive Director of Vodafone Group plc and Ashmore Group plc
  • Melanie Mclaren, FRC Executive Director, Audit
  • Gary Pflugrath, Director, Public Policy and Regulation, IFAC
  • Will Smith, Partner responsible for UK Auditor of the Future Programme, Deloitte

Anton Colella, ICAS Chief Executive, said: "Audit quality relies on quality people. The challenge is that audit needs to attract and retain the most talented individuals - now and in the future.  We need to take every opportunity to reposition audit for the next generation by demonstrating the role which audit plays in society and improve the perception of the value of a career in audit. More and more we need to demonstrate what an exciting and fulfilling career choice it can be."

Melanie McLaren, FRC Executive Director, Audit, said: "The FRC has repeatedly stressed the importance of high quality audit to underpin confidence in the capital market. To maintain this the UK needs a sustainable and thriving audit profession. The FRC and ICAS will hold an event for all stakeholders on 23 November in London to debate and agree how we achieve this in a changing business world."

‘Auditor skills in a changing business world – a potential skills gap?’ will take place on 23 November at 5pm in London. This event is free for all who wish to attend.


  • Accountancy

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