Working under the supervision of a senior auditor, staff auditors are accounting professionals employed in a wide variety of industries and companies. The main responsibilities of an auditor include examining, analyzing and verifying a company’s operational and financial activities, as well as ensuring adherence to compliance regulations and guidelines. These professionals might conduct audits for clients or within their own organizations, and they are often called “internal editors.” They might be focused solely on financial aspects, or they might investigate hiring practices and procedures as well.
The primary goal for the staff auditor is to identify potential risk areas for a company, such as mismanagement, fraud and other types of discrepancies. Companies hire these types of professionals to avoid legal and financial problems. Other duties include reviewing ledgers, financial statements, receipts, financial and employment applications and employee files. The audit might also include reviewing all types of communications, such as emails, memos and letters, as well as interviewing other staff members. After the audit has been conducted, the auditor typically creates a report for the upper management team, including suggestions and remedies for identified issues.
Staff auditors work in many different areas and industries. Industries that have many regulations, such as financial institutions, non-profit organizations, human resource companies and medical research corporations, typically employ professionals of this type. A staff auditor might work independently or on a team with others. If the auditor works on a team, each team member usually is responsible for a specific area of the audit. He or she must have strong ethics and must be able to expose fraudulent occurrences without fail.
The staff auditor usually works traditional business hours from Monday to Friday. When a company has seasonal busy periods or is about to go through a regulatory filing process, the auditor might be required to work longer hours and through the weekend. Some work overtime to meet month-end closing goals, and some travel to work at off-site client locations.
Most people in this position typically hold four-year college degrees in the areas of finance, accounting or auditing. This position typically is held in the first one to three years of an accounting career. If the auditor earns a professional license, such as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Chartered Accountant (CA) or Certified Internal Auditor (CIA) license, he or she might qualify for promotions and raises. After mastering the staff auditor role, the accounting professional might pursue a senior auditor position.