Chio Lim Stone Forest (CLSF) was established in 1985, and was initially a textile factory located in Jalan Sultan and has since expanded to the present Wilkie Edge on Sophia road. CLSF is a part of RSM International, the 6th largest accounting and consultancy firm globally, having 736 offices spread across 76 offices. The member groups of RSM International unite together to provide their clients with the highest service quality.
The company is located in Singapore, CLSF is the first Certified Public Accountant (CPA) firm to be ISO 9002 certified and the largest CPA firm outside of the Big 4. It has extensive experience working dealing with clients of all sizes however, it is a better fit for the mid-markets in the area of advice services. They also provide a wide variety of business-related solutions (see Appendix I) that caters to all stage of a company’s expansion. Their value system, which is comprised of a combination of enthusiasm, proactivity and practical, personal persistence, professional and progressive is the foundation of the delivery of their services.
CLSF is an open platform, where there isn’t any bias toward any religion, race, or language. An open platform is crucial because it creates an atmosphere of harmony. As regards the number of employees it employs 572 people of 17 nationalities, consisting of 19 directors and 15 partners at present (see Appendix 2.). In terms of the amount that it earns, it is 10th out of the member groups of RSM International (see Appendix 3).
Additionally, CLSF is committed to being a socially-conscious corporation by giving back to society by the sponsorship of book prizes, bursaries, and donating funds to charitable organizations.
What distinguishes CLSF different from the other major four companies is the fact that it is a growth-oriented, ambitious firm. Based on its technical expertise as well as proactive customer service and a commitment to integrity and professionalism, it allows CLSP to offer value-added solutions for clients in order to assist them in growing their businesses. This is evident from how the total number of employees employed by CLSP grew by 17% per year in the past 22 years, due to the growth of more prestigious clients i.e. listed companies.
Description of the job/work to be that was assigned (500-600) 594 words
I was taught to conduct audits in an investment company (ELC Success Pte Ltd). As part of the audit process, I created a lead schedule based on the client’s control accounts i.e. the trial balance report. Utilizing the template from previous years as a template I transferred the final audited numbers to the final year’s columns of figures (2009) in the current template for the year and after that, I added the current year (2010) figures in the non-audited figures. I’d ensure that the figures were in the appropriate sections, such as Cash and equivalents are tied to both the balance sheet and profit and loss reports before I begin my audit planning.
I went through the previous year’s audit report to gain an understanding of the client’s needs and note any issues that remain to be addressed in the audit this year. I then began the preparation of forms like the questions on engagement risks, independent questionnaires the materiality determination form, etc. to know the business of the client. Engagement risk questionnaires help to determine the risk level by analyzing elements like ownership, management business environment, liquidity, and financial factors to determine whether we should accept or reject the audit. The Independence questionnaire is a review of the compliance of the business with ethical standards, and also to make sure there aren’t any threats to independence. The form for the determination of materiality documents the process of calculating planning materiality, which determines the nature of audit procedures carried out. It permits us to propose either waiver or adjustment audit adjustments in accordance with the limit of materiality.
After I completed the planning forms I then arranged an internal meeting to plan the year together with the manager. The meeting uncovered any issues that I needed to keep in mind for this year’s audit, such as investment properties including deferred and present taxes, and also to review my planning forms simultaneously. After the forms were approved and approved by my manager, I began my audit fieldwork by following the audit procedure carefully on those manual audit programmes sheets (MAPS) covering the various areas such as revenue, etc. I then gathered the analysis of the revenue and then checked the castings. Then, I signed off with the ledger, and cross-reference the supporting analysis with the schedule for lead. I also read and document the client’s revenue acknowledgment policy. For the section on the revenue generated by asset use, I conducted rent reasonableness tests to check the accuracy of the number of units owned by the business and then analyzed the total amount of revenue by applying the rates specified in the rental contract. Additionally, I looked through the journal entries to look for significant irregular or significant transactions.
After I had completed the sheets covering the various sections I wrote the current year’s financial statements with the aid of an accounting guidebook and the previous year’s financial statements. I changed the language according to the book and changed the numbers for the current year using the audited figures within the Lead Schedules.
Additionally, I was taught how to conduct an accounts strike-off on a business that is closing (Austro Asia Pte Ltd.). The goal of an account strike-off is to close and eliminate the accounts. I needed to make sure that the expenses have been paid until the date of the strike-off prior to closing the accounts. Therefore, I looked at the bank statements for any cashbook movements. Then, I would make adjustments to document any costs that were attributable to i.e. filing or audit fees, XBRL fees that were not included in the general ledger of the year. I also conducted an audit for the statutory requirements to confirm that the members’ register is correct and that there were no adjustments required. Then, I’d create and send the confirmations to directors for their approval.
Achievements and learning experiences (300-400 words per segment)
Prior to my internship, I thought: “Would there be ample opportunities to get to know the working life of an auditor, since I’m just being an internship student?” This question was answered after three months at CLSF. In reality, I’ve acquired new knowledge and abilities which will help me prepare for working in a professional environment.
Personal Skills 396 Words
I’m more proactive in asking questions when I’ve encountered any questions. This is because I want to have more chances to grow and take advantage of every chance. Therefore, I’d take my doubts in a consolidated form and ask when I encountered something unfamiliar. Initiation begins at “I” which is why it can help greatly in taking the initiative to clear up any doubts.
I remain open regarding new audit procedures since it’s impossible for me to understand everything. My first assignment was the most challenging and time-consuming task I had to complete. I talked to my elders and the job was made simpler by their explanations to me of what I needed to do. I am thankful that they were there to assist and guide me.
It was a stark contrast to my school experience where I was quieter. I would often ask questions after the class as I do not want to disrupt the lesson and I am scared of asking questions that are not relevant. Therefore, I’d talk to my classmates first before seeking advice from my teachers.
Being an intern also helped me become more determined. “There is no way to fail or failure, there is only constructive feedback.” Every setback I have faced allows me to overcome it and grow as a person. One example is that I served as the auditor-in-charge of one of my clients. When I read the review questions I was not dissatisfied because this was the first time trying the task. Actually, I was determined to discover my mistakes and gain knowledge from them. This is a clear indication that I’m an individual who has a ‘never say die’ mentality wherein I’m willing to take as well as learn from mistakes. This gives me the ability to grow as a person, instead of losing hope.
Similar to this, I also have this same attitude of determination and a desire to learn at the school. I was unable to handle my studies at first because I struggled to adjust to the Polytechnic environment where students follow a lecture format. But, I did do my best and took plenty of time to adjust to the style of teaching. It was my goal to master accounting courses because I love learning about a subject I love. So I set out to succeed and all my hard work resulted in me being named Director’s List for the years 2008 and 2009.
Teamwork 380 words
The development of team spirit is essential for a team to work together for the same goal: quality audit. The importance of teamwork is especially in the audit department since we are part of diverse teams. Teamwork improves our abilities of coordination, communication, and helps us to look at the bigger overall picture.
I’ve come to realize that I’m an effective team player after I first participated in an audit with two of my senior colleagues. I also realized the importance of trust when members of my team are given the task of working on different areas of audit work papers. So, we need to be sure that the person performs his assigned task in a timely manner, particularly when certain sections of the work papers are connected. As an example I was asked to complete two sections, namely tests for sales completeness on the sales commission income as well as confirm trade receivables. In the case of the section on commission income from sales, I was required to use the section on confirmation of trade receivables because one of the auditing procedures is to check the invoices that have not been paid to trade receivables aging to confirm their completeness. This audit process ensures there are sales even though the money is not paid.
Additionally, I was involved in a presentation for a group where my team members were required to present MAPS concerning the closing and finalization of audits. Our first meeting was held and it was a bit awkward initially as we didn’t know each other. But things got more comfortable after we introduced our personalities. I realized that a team requires an effective leader to grow. My colleague was the one who led the discussion, and we started to discuss our thoughts and opinions about the materials for the presentation.
Similar to the way I work in projects as well as CCA I also have to work with my team members in order to accomplish the same goals. I was happily working in teams since we get to enjoy the fruits of our work when we all work together. I consider the two heads are better than one, as there will always be more ideas to improve and gain from each other in comparison to one person. There’s a saying which says “T.E.A.M. “T.E.A.M. – Together Everyone Achieves Much!” In a way that teamwork is a key factor in effective learning and distribution of work which is essential in a work environment.
Effective Communication 352 words
Effective communication is a crucial component in executing audits. Without it, no task can ever be done. Communication skills are essential to building a strong rapport with customers through audit fieldwork.
I’ve learned the importance of efficient communication when I needed to ask for documents from a source from a Japanese client. Because she was only able to comprehend basic English I needed to make use of words that were simpler to communicate with her in a way that she would understand and respond to me. I was also asked about the motives behind asking for the invoices as well as the sales contract from her. I was required to explain the reasons to her. So, one of the biggest challenges that I was faced with was asking the appropriate questions. It is only by asking the appropriate questions and listening to the answers that the right information can be gathered on the topic being debated.
So, listening skills are an integral aspect of communicating. Being a good listener allows me to comprehend better and gain more knowledge. That was the case when I participated in my group’s presentation. As opposed to leading the discussion, I took in the views of everyone before giving them my views. We also incorporated some ideas that we considered to be helpful and sought consensus from everyone before coming to a conclusion.
As an intern, I am able to help me improve my interpersonal and communication abilities because I am required to communicate regularly with various managers senior staff, clients, and supervisors while on the job. It’s also not difficult to notice that I’m more aware when communicating with someone of upper quality. I always think about and create the sentences in my head prior to talking to my superiors and managers.
I am one of those who are not fluent in the English language from a young age. However, I’ve attended numerous English writing and speaking classes to help me improve my English language. I have been enrolled in business communications classes for three years has increased my confidence when speaking in public as well as the ability to write more effectively and professionally. In order to enhance my English language, I frequently arrive early at work to stay up-to-date with the latest developments.
Growing and learning continuously 394 words
“Learning is never over and everyone is constantly growing.” Personally, I believe that continuing education and skill development is crucial because employees with the appropriate combination of skills will boost the efficiency of a business. Director of CLSF Mr. Tay has also stated that in the context of a CPA firm, a person is more valuable as age increases due to experience. I fully believe in his assertion.
In the last three months, I’ve been to 4 workshops to refresh myself with the most recent International commercial (INCO) terms, updated FRS 2010 Microsoft Word training for the creation of audit reports as well as audit 1B.
The soft skills I’ve learned would be using Microsoft Word to prepare audit reports. I was taught many useful functions that could help me make changes to my reports. These functions include using particular sums of cells in formulas and bookmarks to connect figures from to the Notes in Financial Statements and using the “Index And Tables” feature to produce what is known as the Table Of Contents of the audit report. This training helped me know what the formulas mean and how the numbers are connected. This allows me to see what information in the reports is affected by my changes.
This contrasts with the school I attended, I took an entire class called Decision SpreadSheets in which I learned the basics of Microsoft Excel applications such as making pivot charts, macros, tables. I was also taught about the various functions of Microsoft Excel like sum, and if. In this manner, I could use the IT (IT) capabilities I’ve learned for my auditing. This will allow me to be a more effective and efficient auditor in the preparation of audit reports.
In terms of technical abilities, I have introduced the latest version of MAPS during an audit workshop. The workshop was very beneficial since it provided me with an understanding of the process and a greater knowledge of how and the reasons for auditing procedures in the different sections of working documents. I also learned about the basics of communication as well as extensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL) as well as the basic tax system.
It’s different from when I learned more about the concept of auditing in the classroom, as contrasted to the actual method of conducting an audit in an actual setting. Thus, I was able to use my knowledge about audits and apply it to my audit knowledge.
Relate an event (300-400 word count) 398 words
The issue began with the introduction of version 2010 of MAPS in the lotus notes (company’s database) was launched. A majority of the audit program forms were completely new, with a focus on the determination of materiality. The usual approach is to apply the highest amount of total assets, or net assets to determine an amount that is considered to be material. In this case, however, I was advised to apply the normalized comprehensive income prior to income tax in order to check the revenue amount.
When I conducted the test of depreciation’s reasonableness, I discovered that the variance in the depreciation cost amount was significant. So, I needed to make both current year and prior year adjustments to rectify the depreciation cost since the client’s depreciation had been excessive in the past. After that, I realized my unaudited numbers for investment properties, depreciation expense, and earnings retained were incorrect. I immediately reworked the lead schedule and completed the statement of flow. The cash flow statement was not tied despite trying numerous times.
I tried to run the lead schedule again and discovered that I had made some errors that affected my report of the cash flow. I spoke to my supervisor and she provided me with information on the issue i.e. tax-deferred which I did not take into consideration. After correcting my mistakes and submitting the audited file after I realized that I had didn’t modify the net profit before tax figure on the form for the income tax program. I immediately began to rush my work, as I still needed to update the figures on my lead schedules as well as in all the other statements and had to file the report the next day. After trying the program for income tax I realized that there was no impact on the tax numbers since taxes are calculated using rental income, not net profits before tax.
After the incident, I reminded myself to remain more calm and observant. I should not be rushing around but allow myself plenty of time to contemplate the impact of depreciation expenses on my balance sheets i.e. taxes on income, expenses, and retained earnings prior to editing my leads schedules and statements. This saves time as well as effort.
If I had to go through this scenario once more, I’d learn to be calm and only do one step at a. I’d make sure that I’ve adjusted all figures on the lead schedules correctly by examining the audit program forms to make sure I’ve made all my previous year adjustments prior to filing the cash flow statement.