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Opinion

It Takes a Special Person to Be an Auditor

The job of an internal auditor is to evaluate, analyze, reach conclusions, and provide objective opinions. The job is like that of a doctor, assessing the health of the company, diagnosing illness, and prescribing a course to recovery. To do this, the auditor must possess special qualities.

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Be Client Centered

It's all about the client, isn't it? Or is it? Recently, I did a Google search on "CPA firms." About 776,000 hits. Then I tried a twist. I added the words "client centered." I was curious: how many CPA firms actively use the phrase when they are marketing and communicating? Result: the 776,000 hits dwindled down to 74.

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Electronic Technology and the Auditor

Some 20 years ago, just after I started my career as an auditor, ‘portable computers’ were made available to audit staff for certain assignments. These machines would be unrecognisable today and I imagine that there is one similar to the one I first used in a museum somewhere. They were the size and weight of large sewing machines and were only just portable, difficult to use, unreliable and very unfriendly.

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Be a Business Partner

How do accountants add value to the organization in today's dynamic business environment? We must evolve into operations-focused business partners who have advanced beyond the practical accounting skill set. We must take a broad strategic perspective of our organization's needs and focus on maximizing value for multiple constituents.

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International experiences of transfer pricing

Some years ago very few people had heard of transfer pricing unless they were connected with multinational companies or their tax advisors. Nowadays it has steadily moved up the agenda and today transfer pricing is regarded as being an important part of tax risk management. The main reason is the firm onus on the taxpayer with self-assessment systems.

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XBRL Primer

A few months ago, we conducted an online poll of its readers asking them to rate their knowledge of XBRL. Despite the significant amount of press that the emerging technology has received in the financial world, just three percent reported a strong level of understanding. And the overwhelming majority -- 69 percent -- admitted they had no knowledge of XBRL.

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How XBRL Is Transforming Financial Reporting

A recent symposium on the benefits of XBRL, eXtensible Business Reporting Language, brought together a prestigious panel of experts who presented the benefits of the revolutionary financial reporting language. The purpose of the symposium was to create more awareness within the investor relations industry on the development and implementation of XBRL.

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The New CFO Checklist

A person who has been newly hired into the CFO position may feel overwhelmed by the vast number of tasks to be completed. Generally speaking, the new CFO should place top priorities on learning the following areas during the first few months on the job: cash flow, then contracts, followed by measurement systems and management.

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Seven Ways to Enhance Your Communication Skills

As accounting professionals take on more visible roles within their organizations, the ability to communicate has become increasingly important. They must be able to deliver messages to diverse audiences -- including senior management, clients and colleagues -- and express their ideas through a variety of channels, such as memos, presentations and reports.

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