Forensic Accounting in Practice
Dr. Carolyn Green
Determine the most important five (5) skills that a forensic accountant needs to possess and evaluate the need for each skill. Be sure to include discussion regarding the relationship between the skill and its application to business operations
Although forensic accounting is not a new field, it has become more talked about since cases like Enron came to light. For someone interested in the Forensic Accountant profession they should know that this field can be time consuming, but very rewarding. People who work in this career investigate white collar crimes such as company fraud, ...view middle of the document...
” From a traditional accounting perspective, these core skills include education, training and experience with generally accepted accounting principles and its application, attest services, tax, general knowledge of business law and ethics for CPAs. Based on the ideas of a forensic accountant there may be not the same set of core skills that are needed.
(Charles, Ramona & Suzanne)
Analytical proficiency was important attributes for the forensic accountant. Prior to that study proposed that analytical abilities are important in the practice of forensic accounting. In sum, these results provide additional weight to the assertion that analytical characteristics are critical to the forensic accountant’s ability to provide value-added services in engagements calling for more than simply auditing skills and problem-solving abilities.
Core skills indicate that communication skills are the important keys to a better forensic accountant. “Effective oral communicator” most frequently on average, reflecting the need to effectively represent verbally a position in a court of law. CPAs concurred by choosing it third most frequently in the Top 5 and “Effective written communicator” second, perhaps indicating the importance of preparing internal reports and documentation for review by colleagues, or the submission of a written report to the court.
For instance, in investigative cases, attorneys are using forensic accountants most frequently in many cases that involve financial statements, economic damages and fraud. CPAs that are forensic accountants also are frequently involved in these same kinds of engagements, with valuation work engaged in somewhat more frequently than financial statement misrepresentations.
The computer technology reflects the relative “newness” of the need for this kind of expertise in the forensic accounting field. CPAs in practice often partner with others proficient in technology. The AICPA does present specialized technology credentials such as the Certified Information Technology Professional. The higher replies rates by those who wants forensic accounting services versus those who supply those services may show a strategic niche for additional practice development. Additionally, educators are increasingly calling for the incorporation of technology into the forensic accounting curricula. (Charles, Ramona & Suzanne)
Interpersonal and auditing skills may be important, but the orientation toward problem solving appears to be more important to the success or effectiveness of the forensic accountant. However, the forced choice of only five core skills could have affected the rankings. An extended study that separates out the ranking of more technical versus people with interpersonal and auditing skills could be useful. Ethical skills according to the corporate culture are very important for the success and daily work of forensic accountants.
Accounting professionals do important responsibilities beyond preparing financial...