What Are the 10 Things You Didn’t Know about Auditors? #IIAMay
In the spirit of International Internal Audit Awareness Month #IIAMay, we wanted to shed some light on the truly unique career path of auditing. To be a good auditor takes diligence and attention to detail. To be a great auditor is to have complete control over your field, a natural ease with client service and the ability to think laterally about complex data sets and accounts.
But what makes an auditor? Where did the term come from, and what are the industry’s origins?
For the layperson, auditing seems like a shadowy semi-accountancy role: a figures obsessive tucked away between stacks of reports, regulation frameworks, running checklists and matching accounts.
But as we all know, the world of the auditor is one of agile business and finance management, diligently run by a vast array of accountancy, tax, legal and compliance professionals whose mission is to create more efficient, effective, compliant, and profitable companies.
Here are our top 10 things you didn’t know about auditing:
- Although accurate accounts have been kept since the ancient Greek, Persian and Roman era, perhaps the earliest evidence of what could be described as modern accounting was via the principles of double entry bookkeeping, evolved and published in 1494, by Luca Paciolo in Venice. Auditing as a specific independent role found its footing during the 1700’s as the industrial revolution, and the rise and rise of enormous supply chains and manufacturing economies, came to fruition. Also, Luca Paciolo taught Da Vinci.
- Today, Deloitte is the largest auditing firm in the world, pulling in a revenue of $47.6 billion in 2019.
- The largest non-Big 4 mid-size audit firm is BDO, whose revenue stream hit $10.3 billion in 2019.
- Until the turn of the 21st century (and the collapse of Arthur Anderson), there was a “Big 8” in auditing – Arthur Andersen, Arthur Young, Coopers & Lybrand, Deloitte Haskins and Sells, Ernst & Whinney, Peat Marwick Mitchell, Price Waterhouse, and Touche Ross.
- Bubble Gum was invented by an accountant: Walter E. Diemer worked for Fleer in 1928 as an accountant and was tasked with making a cheaper gum base, and with only pink food colouring and a saltwater taffy machine, he made the ubiquitous bubble gum.
- PwC, one of the Big 4, is tasked with counting the ballots for the Oscars although they have famously got it wrong.
- The 2020 average Internal Auditor salary is $58,844 / €48,134
- A young J.P. Morgan was an accountant before he became a financier and banking powerhouse, as was J. D. Rockefeller, Venus Williams and John Grisham.
- Mary Addison Hamilton was Australia’s first female certified public accountant, and paved the way for more women to enter the business of accountancy.
- “Audit” is a derivation of the Latin “auditus”, which means a hearing, a listening or an oral retelling.
Search other articles to learn about internal auditor careers:
How to Become an Internal Auditor – A Step by Step Guide, Internal Auditor CV, Template & Examples. Internal Auditor Qualifications & Skills, Internal Auditor Salary & Pay, Internal Auditor Job Description & Profile
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