Less extensive than an audit, but more involved than a compilation, a review engagement consists primarily of analytical procedures we apply to the financial statements, and various inquiries we make of your company's management team. If the financial statements or supporting information appear inconsistent or otherwise questionable, we may need to perform additional procedures.
A review doesn't require us to study and evaluate your company's internal controls or verify data with third parties or physically inspect assets. Rather, a review report expresses limited assurance in the form of the statement: "We are not aware of any material modifications" for the financial statements to be in conformity with the Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). Reviewed financial statements must include all required footnotes and other disclosures.
Why might a business request a review engagement? It can be a good middle ground, providing the advantages of a CPA's technical expertise without the work and expense of an audit.
In compiling financial statements for a client, we present information that is the "representation of management" and expresses no opinion or assurance on the statements. Compilations do not require inquiries of management or analytical procedures. Instead, we rely on our knowledge of accounting principles and a general understanding of your business.
There are three types of CPA certified financial statements:
Compilations. The first level of service is the compilation. There is no verification that the numbers presented in the statements are accurate and the financial statements produced are for management and third-party use.
Reviews. More involved than a compilation, but not as comprehensive as an audit, reviews provide “limited assurance.” Key personnel are interviewed about the company’s accounting policies and procedures, industry, operations, and financial statements. A review report is issued as well.
Audits. Audit services are the highest level of service provided. We work closely with key personnel to gain knowledge of internal control systems (“checks and balances”). Verification and substantiation procedures are performed in accordance with Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS).
Audit, Review, or Compilation?
You may be wondering which one is best for your business. The answer depends on the level of assurance or financial accuracy that you want. For instance, you may decide a compilation is all you need this year, but in subsequent years, you may decide that a review - or even an audit - provides better information about your financials and enables you to make better decisions about the future growth of your company.
We Look Forward to Helping Your Business Achieve Financial Success!
Whether your business or organization needs an audit, compilation, review - or maybe even all three - our experienced team of CPAs, accountants, and tax professionals is here to help.
Not sure which level of assurance your business needs? Contact us using the form below.