Auditor Kaitātari Kaute

Auditors examine and report on the financial records and systems of organisations to ensure they are accurate.

Most employers require you to be a member of Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand (CAANZ).

Licensed auditors

Financial issuer auditors must be licensed. Financial issuers are corporations, investment trusts or government agencies.

To become a licensed auditor, the Financial Markets Authority requires you to:

  • complete a commerce, business or accounting degree from an approved university
  • be a member of CAANZ
  • have a New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants (NZICA) Certificate of Public Practice and an NZICA Advanced Certificate of Competence.

Auditors may do some or all of the following:

  • examine the financial statements and accounting methods of organisations to ensure they are accurate and comply with regulations
  • find and report accounting errors
  • check funds are used wisely and within the law, especially in government departments
  • assess any risks to the business
  • prepare audit reports, explain findings to managers, and advise on solutions to any problems
  • check that organisations have followed audit recommendations.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for auditors includes:

  • accounting
  • communications work
  • information technology work.

Personal Qualities

Auditors need to be:

  • able to keep information private
  • motivated and organised
  • good at making decisions
  • skilled at solving problems
  • methodical and accurate
  • able to work well under pressure
  • good at communicating 
  • able to analyse and interpret data.

Skills

Auditors need to have:

  • accounting and maths skills
  • a good understanding of auditing and financial accounting systems
  • knowledge of tax law
  • knowledge of business management practices, including business ethics
  • ability to use auditing and accounting software such as Xero, MYOB, iFirm or SAP.

Conditions

Auditors:

  • usually work regular business hours, but may need to work evenings and weekends, or be on call
  • work in offices at accounting firms, government departments and private businesses
  • may travel locally or internationally to clients' businesses.

Subject Recommendations

A tertiary entrance qualification is required to enter further training. Useful subjects include accounting, business studies, English, maths with statistics and/or calculus, and economics.

Auditors can earn around $45K-$54K per year.

Pay for auditors varies depending on experience and what region they work in.

  • New auditors usually earn $45,000 to $54,000 a year.
  • Auditors with up to four years' experience usually earn $54,000 to $70,000.
  • Auditors with five to nine years' experience usually earn $70,000 to $94,000.
  • Senior auditors and audit managers may earn $90,000 to $165,000.

Sources: Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand, 'Remuneration Survey 2018', 2019; Hays, '2019/20 Salary Guide', 2020; and Payscale.com, 2020.

Auditors may progress to work as:

  • audit managers
  • associate directors/partners
  • audit directors, after gaining experience as associate directors/partners.

Auditors may specialise in:

  • computer audits
  • environmental audits
  • tax services
  • trust account audits
  • trustee supervision
  • risk management
  • external audits – when an organisation contracts in an auditor
  • internal audits – when an organisation is audited by an employee
  • forensic accounting – investigating unusual financial transactions that could be illegal
  • corporate governance support – making sure that management, boards, shareholders and other stakeholders know about professional accounting standards.

Years Of Training

3-6 years of training usually required.

To become an auditor you need a commerce, business or accounting degree, majoring in accounting.

Most employers require you to be a member of Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand (CAANZ).

Auditor