How are inspection and auditing going to look like in 2021 and beyond?

Inspections and audits are a crucial part of your business accounting process as it allows you to be transparent with your stakeholders. However, due to travel restrictions and other precautions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, most businesses have been forced to either delay inspections and audits or shift to remote audits or inspections.

According to a survey by ACCA, 53% of respondents working in public practice stated that they were experiencing pressures completing services work. Over 35% said that they were unable to meet reporting deadlines. A quarter of the respondents said they were experiencing difficulties gathering audit evidence, and 27% said they experienced an increased audit risk related to the valuation of assets.

Read more: Digital Forms To Accelerate Paperless Field Service Management 

estimates and invoices

Executing field service inspections and audits during the COVID-19 pandemic 

Pre-pandemic, a typical audit process meant the regulatory inspector or the auditor visiting the facility with a checklist of items to be audited. The auditor verifies if equipment, machinery, processes, or systems are compliant. Recording the reviewed information would help the auditing authorities to assess and decide the compliance status.

However, the uncertainty due to the COVID-19 crisis is increasing the challenge in obtaining sufficient audit evidence. So, it is crucial for the auditors to pre-plan the audit process as they are likely to come across issues not encountered previously but need to be considered now.

Inspections and audits conducted during the pandemic require documents and supporting evidence to be shared electronically using secure electronic systems. This electronic data exchange can save time for both the auditor and the field staff.

The auditor can review the documentation and communicate with field supervisors via email or video calls. While this may not be a great way, it eliminates the in-person interaction and is an ideal way to conduct an audit in locations where face-to-face interaction is not feasible currently.

Moreover, auditors are likely to be affected by restrictions on travel which can be challenging to complete the audit engagement. While most companies can obtain information in new ways and operate controls over the production of financial information differently, audit firms will have to look for remote working and utilizing the various available technology tools, such as inspection software (audit software). 

Read more: 5 Key Aspects of a Pandemic-Ready Virtual Field Service Office 

Tips to conduct audits seamlessly during the COVID-19 pandemic

1. Remote auditing

As businesses look to gain their foothold, how they work has changed forever. With strict isolation measures and social distancing in vogue, many people will prefer to work remotely. This arrangement helps people enjoy the work-life balance it promotes. The audit process will have to adapt to this change as well. However, auditors can still enact thorough procedures for their clients remotely to avoid penalization.

2. More flexibility and Adaptability

Gone are the days when inspections and audits were rigid, tried-and-tested processes. Today, the auditors need to be more flexible and adapt to each business they audit. In addition, factors such as types of records examined and the number of people interrogated will impact the audit process. All this must be taken into account by both the businesses as well as the auditors.

3. Leverage technology

Leveraging cloud-based audit and inspection software has become more critical than ever before. Every system has its benefits and drawbacks and will suit different enterprises in different ways. Auditors will have to adapt to new technologies and applications to complete the audits the same way they would if they were in office. 

Read more: 4 Reasons Why Field Agents Resist Inspection Management Software and How to Overcome It 

Inspection Management Software

How can ReachOut Inspection Management Software help you?

As the field service industry is booming, enterprises that leverage audit software or inspection software are more likely to cut through the competition. Research and Markets agency reports that the demand for SaaS over traditional on-premises is set to increase significantly over the next four years. This growing demand is compelling enterprises to switch to cloud-based FSM solutions like ReachOut.

Here are a few reasons you should consider ReachOut FSM solutions:

1. Unrestrained flexibility

The ReachOut Suite integrates easily with the existing infrastructure with minimal disruptions. This enables the organization to digitize its current forms and allows the field technicians to work productively. ReachOut audit software offers dynamic scheduling, agent-generated work orders, skills database, real-time data collection through mobile apps, and white labeling options, making it highly flexible.

2. Rich integrations

ReachOut inspection software integrates with PayPal, Stripe, Zoho, SAP, Quickbooks, Salesforce CRM, Slack, MS Dynamics, Dropbox, InfinCE, Odoo, Upskill, and other external software. These integrations add powerful capabilities to the field management suite. For example, PayPal integration allows field agents to collect payments before leaving the client’s location, while QuickBooks automates account and payroll management.

Read more: ReachOut FSM Helps Unlock Business Value by Facilitating Integrations with Leading Enterprise Software 

3. Powerful workflows and functionality

ReachOut audit and inspection software comes packed with enterprise-grade functionality that empowers powerful workflows. While most FSM suites offer features such as tracking, scheduling, dispatching, and invoicing, they can become obsolete if they aren’t dynamic. ReachOut enhances its features regularly and upgrades its technology often.

4. Robust security

With its advanced hosting options, strong access controls, and detailed audit logging, ReachOut Enterprise field management software offers exceptional security without compromising functionality.

5. User-focused suite

ReachOut Enterprise field service suite focuses on the user. It improves turnaround time, reduces operational costs, and delights the user. Its intuitive admin panel and field agent mobile apps help employees stay organized and improve their productivity. Also, the companion mobile app for field technicians issue alerts for service requests. The possibilities are endless.

Read more: How ReachOut Audit Software Helps Manage Audits and Inspections Like a Dream  

ReachOut Enterprise field service management software offers businesses the latest functionality to improve efficiencies and thrive in today’s digital landscape. Now you can manage most of your field jobs remotely without getting hit by the pandemic. To gain that competitive edge, feel free to talk to us and see how ReachOut suite can help your business.

Sachin Krishna

Sachin works as a part of the digital marketing team at ReachOut Suite. He believes in a healthy and resourceful web and does his own little contributions for the purpose by creating and disseminating innovative and quality content.

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