Assurance reporting can be painful for many individuals and may be the last thing you want to think about and plan for amongst countless other tasks. Pain points of planning ahead for your AAF report we have highlighted may include time consumption, unreliability, uncontrollability, a waste of time and many more! This is why we’ve come up with an AAF best practice.
At Assure UK we understand budgeting for time and costing can be frustrating however we recognise that efficient budgeting is an essential step to ensure a quick and smooth completion of your AAF report.
Deciding to not plan and budget ahead of your AAF report may result in the following consequences:
- Difficulty in meeting agreed timescales
- Less control
- Overspent time on AAF rather than valuable client and normal course of work activities
We have identified the best 5 practices you can introduce into your AAF experience to budget your time and costs effectively:
Create a budget
As obvious as it sounds it is a key step missed by many. Creating a budget per stage prior to kick off will allow you to keep track against the actual time you have spent completing your AAF. Review time previously completed on AAFs, and seek to reduce your time yearly as the process becomes more familiar. This will open your availability to work on your specific client tasks.
Allocate time effectively
Allocate time weekly to work on specific aspects of the AAF. Working in these specific time slots will allow the project to progress steadily in line with the agreed timetable and precise tasks to be ticked off such as evidence uploads or report update and reviews, sticking to the budgeted time allocated.
Take the time to periodically review the budgeted versus actual hours spent on the project at key stages. Regular reviews will allow you to gain an understanding of the time and resources required for completion. This will allow better budgeting for a more cost effective project in future years.
Select a nominated individual to conduct the day-to-day management and reporting of the AAF to the auditor. Highlighting a key individual will reduce the amount of time allocated to management for the project and will allow quick cost-effective communication with the auditor to get the job done while reducing costs and time.
As well as having a nominated individual, it is useful to delegate tasks and have a team on hand to help collate audit evidence, therefore confirm the availability of a team ahead of AAF kick off. Spreading the workload across staff and various resources will allow evidence to be collected more quickly and efficiently, helping to reduce costs through delegation of tasks.
At Assure UK we can help you effectively plan and budget for a cost-effective, fast and easy AAF process. If you would like to know more about assurance reporting and the AAF options available for you, please get in contact with us at 020 7112 8300 alternatively you can email firstname.lastname@example.org.