Reform of audits
The credibility of the Irish auditing profession has taken a bit of hammering over the past few years as its failure to spot problems looming in the balance sheets is regularly used as a stick to beat it.
However, they are not alone and proposals for widespread reform are being finalised by the European Commission.
Among the reforms on the table are the mandatory rotation of auditors, which is music to the ears of medium-sized firms such as Grant Thornton that have being trying to break into the top league for years.
But it would also appear to find favour with Irish companies if a recent survey (carried out by Grant Thornton) is to be believed. It spoke to 50 Irish firms and some 84 per cent of them are in favour of mandatory rotation of auditors, while almost 60 per cent said that market confidence would be helped if large companies had two auditors.
“This survey shows there is a clear appetite for change from Irish companies. What we need to see is the Government pushing the audit reform agenda when it takes on the EU presidency in January,” says Aidan Connaughton, head of audit at Grant Thornton.