SMP eNews: February 2013

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    Feb 12, 2013
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    SMP eNews: February 2013

    In This Issue:

    1. SMP Quick Poll—December 2012 Results and Year-End Report

    STANDARDS AND REGULATION
    2. IAASB Consults on Audit Quality Framework
    3. Boards Seek Input on Strategy Development
    4. Input to IESBA: Responding to a Suspected Illegal Act
    5. IFRS for SMEs Update

    RESOURCES AND REPORTS
    6. Engagement Quality Control Reviews: Practical Considerations
    7. Third Edition of Practice Management Guide Now Available
    8. Business Reporting Processes Guidance
    9. New Translations of SMP Guides

    MEETINGS AND EVENTS
    10. Upcoming IFAC SMP Forum
    11. Next Committee Meeting and New Members
    12. World Congress of Accountants 2014 to be Held in Rome; Sponsorship Opportunities

     

    1. SMP Quick Poll—December 2012 Results and Year-End Report

    The Nov.-Dec. 2012 IFAC SMP Quick Poll showed that the smallest accounting practices and their clients remain cautiously optimistic, despite concerns over continuing economic uncertainty and, in some cases, overly burdensome regulations and standards.

    After keeping up with new regulations and standards, three issues related to the health of the economy—attracting and retaining clients, pressure to lower fees, and rising costs—topped the list of challenges faced by SMPs. Similarly, respondents indicated that their small- and medium-sized entity (SME) clients are most challenged by regulations, followed by economic uncertainty. Respondents generally expect little change in business performance in the coming year; however, slightly more SMPs (5 points more) indicated they expect business to improve in the coming year compared to those who said the same at the end of 2011. They expect this growth primarily to be driven by revenue from new clients.

    The year-end 2012 poll was conducted in 17 languages from November 21 to December 31 and received 3,767 responses. IFAC wishes to thank the many member and regional organizations that helped with translation and distribution of the poll. See the full report, which includes notable variations by region and size of practice in addition to selected trend data based on previous polls, in the SMP Committee area of the IFAC site: www.ifac.org/SMP. Also, listen to SMP Committee Chair Giancarlo Attolini’s podcast interview with Accountancy Ireland on key highlights from the poll.

     

    STANDARDS AND REGULATION

    2. IAASB Consults on Audit Quality Framework

    The International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) has released for public comment a Consultation Paper, A Framework for Audit Quality, seeking input from all stakeholders. Through the proposed framework, the IAASB aims to raise awareness of the key elements of audit quality, encourage stakeholders to explore ways to improve audit quality, and facilitate greater dialogue on the topic. The SMP Committee will submit a comment letter and encourages individual SMPs to comment as well. The comment deadline is May 15, 2013. See also the At-a-Glance Summary.

     

    3. Boards Seek Input on Strategy Development

    The International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) is conducting a strategic review to develop a new strategy and work plan for 2014-2016. It is seeking the views of interested parties on key issues to address and their relative priorities as part of this strategy and work plan.

    To contribute your views, participate at IESBA 2014-2016 Strategic Review Survey. The survey will close on March 15, 2013. Individual responses will not be made public.

    At the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) meeting in Brussels, the board discussed, among other projects, the development of its future strategy, including the stakeholder survey that will form part of its strategy development. See the relevant agenda paper and IAASB Meeting Page for more information.

     

    4. Input to IESBA: Responding to a Suspected Illegal Act

    The SMP Committee submitted a comment letter to the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) on its Exposure Draft (ED), Responding to a Suspected Illegal Act, which closed on December 15, 2012. The IESBA will consider the significant comments from the nearly 70 responses received on the ED at its March 2013 meeting.

     

    5. IFRS for SMEs Update

    International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) member Darrel Scott has been appointed chairman of the SME Implementation Group (SMEIG), replacing Paul Pacter, whose term at the IASB ended last year. The SMEIG supports the international adoption of the IFRS for Small and Medium-sized Entities (IFRS for SMEs) and monitors its implementation. The SMEIG met on Feb 4–5 in London. See the Meeting Page to learn more.

     

    RESOURCES AND REPORTS

    6. Engagement Quality Control Reviews: Practical Considerations

    An Engagement Quality Control Review (EQCR) is an important component of an audit firm’s overall audit quality process. The staff of the Transnational Auditors Committee (the executive arm of the Forum of Firms) recently released an Information Paper, Engagement Quality Control Review: Practical Considerations, that illustrates the more judgmental elements relating to an EQCR to help practitioners evaluate and enhance their own processes for conducting such reviews. The paper states, “SMPs may very well apply a less comprehensive EQCR that covers all the requirements of the ISAs and ISQC 1.” SMPs are encouraged to refer to the Guide to Quality Control for Small- and Medium-Sized Practices for more guidance.

     

    7. Third Edition of Practice Management Guide Now Available

    The third edition of its Guide to Practice Management for Small- and Medium-Sized Practices (PM Guide) is now available. The comprehensive guide covers a broad range of topics to help practitioners effectively market, manage, and grow their accounting practices. The new edition of the guide features improvements in content and functionality, including new and updated material on value pricing, knowledge networks, social media marketing, building a business advisory practice, and cloud computing. The tables of contents of each of the eight standalone modules are now cross-linked to improve navigation, and the lists of further readings at the end of each module have been updated. See also the Companion Manual for ways that professional accountancy organizations can use the guide to benefit their members, and links to additional practice management resources from IFAC, its member organizations, and other sources.

     

    8. Business Reporting Processes Guidance

    The IFAC Professional Accountants in Business (PAIB) Committee has developed new International Good Practice Guidance to help professional accountants in business work with their organizations to enhance business reporting processes. Principles for Effective Business Reporting Processes discusses 11 key principles for evaluating and improving business reporting processes, which are complemented by practical guidance outlining the critical arrangements that need to be in place for effective business reporting. The guidance is designed for organizations of all sizes, structures, and sectors, as all organizations need to produce high-quality reports.

     

    9. New Translations of SMP Guides

    New translations of the SMP Committee’s three comprehensive guides have recently been released. To access these, filter by language in SMP Publications & Resources

    • Guide to Using International Standards on Auditing in the Audits of Small- and Medium-Sized Entities in Arabic, Dutch, Latvian, Slovak, and Spanish
    • Guide to Quality Control for Small- and Medium-Sized Practices in Italian
    • Guide to Practice Management for Small- and Medium-Sized Practices in Italian and Spanish

     

    MEETINGS AND EVENTS

    10. Upcoming IFAC SMP Forum

    The 2013 IFAC Small and Medium Practices (SMP) Forum will be held in Kampala, Uganda, on June 5, 2013, and jointly hosted with the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Uganda (ICPAU) and the Pan African Federation of Accountants (PAFA). Each IFAC member organization may send up to ten delegates, who should be those responsible for SMP/small- and medium-sized entity (SME) affairs at their organization. Registration forms will be sent to IFAC member organizations closer to the event. If you are an individual member of an IFAC member organization and wish to attend, please register your interest with your organization. More information will be posted at www.ifac.org/2013SMPForum as it becomes available.

     

    11. Next Committee Meeting and New Members
    The SMP Committee will next meet February 18–19 in New York. The committee welcomes new members Dawn McGeachy-Colby, Katharine Bagshaw, and Subodh Agrawal, and technical advisors Eddy Wong, Makokha Wanjala, Ken McManus, and Gail McEvoy.

    See bios for all SMP Committee members on the committee’s website: www.ifac.org/SMP.   

     

    12. World Congress of Accountants 2014 to be Held in Rome; Sponsorship Opportunities

    The next World Congress of Accountants (WCOA) will be hosted by the Consiglio Nazionale dei Dottori Commercialisti e degli Esperti Contabili (CNDCEC) in Rome, Italy in 2014. Themed 2020 Vision: Learning from the Past, Building the Future, the 2014 WCOA will be held November 10-13 at the Auditorium Parco della Musica. More than 4,000 professionals from all over the world will convene at this can’t-miss IFAC event, held every four years. WCOA 2014 will look back to explore the evolution of the accountancy profession and forward to showcase innovations that will shape the future of the profession. 

     The WCOA also affords an unparalleled opportunity for organizations and firms to share their projects and visions with the world by taking advantage of one of our carefully crafted sponsorship packages. There are numerous options so you’ll be able to select the one that best suits your organization’s unique strategy and goals. For more information, please contact info@wcoa2014rome.com or Dimarco@wcoa2014rome.com

     

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