Software solutions to the dreaded school financial audit

Untitled design 40 | Software solutions to the dreaded school financial audit
By Toby Lester | 6th January 2020 | 8 min read

When auditing time rolls around, it’s hard not to get a sinking feeling. It can be a complicated, drawn-out process, and while you’re bogged down in it, it’s difficult to see the purpose.

However, school financial audits are essential. Schools spend public money in the public interest, so governing bodies and authorities need to see how their money is being put to good use.

Before you even think about selecting an external auditor, there’s a few things you can do to make the process go as smoothly as possible. In fact, with the right school financial software, auditing doesn’t have to be difficult or time-consuming at all. You can start preparing well before you delve into the formal auditing process.

The importance of accurate data

The accuracy of your data can make the whole process much easier, especially if it’s kept up to the minute. This makes audits more efficient, reducing the overall time and work required to dredge up those all-important numbers.

Most importantly, a successful audit is all about transparency. The right financial management software can make your school's finances as clear as glass – which is the most important thing that you should consider for your school audit.

Unified ledger reporting

With financial management software for schools, packages that feature unified ledger reporting are the best tools for financial auditing. Unified ledger functionality differs from traditional accountancy. Rather than consolidating financial data from three or more separate ledgers in a time-consuming and sometimes confusing process, all information exists together on the same ledger and is consolidated automatically.

This enables instant reporting over any timeframe, making it simple to find data that would otherwise be hidden away. Sometimes, getting everything together for an audit can feel like looking for a needle in a haystack; the unified ledger solves this problem, putting all this data at your fingertips.

You can even retrospectively amend fund allocations without having to amend each transaction individually. This completely eliminates an otherwise time-consuming process and ensures you’re always prepared for an audit.

Audit trail

It goes without saying that for a successful audit, you need a robust audit trail to trace the origin of every transaction. A summarised transaction audit trail can make it easy to see funding allocation at a glance.

With software that automatically generates an audit trail, you can see every financial transaction, making it easy to manage.

What’s more, if your software has multi-user access, you can even set auditors up as enquiry-only users. This enables them to access your information themselves; there’s no more back-and-forth as they request information, as they can self-serve.

Top financial software packages

Now that you know what to look for, you’re no doubt interested in seeing how financial software works firsthand. We only know of one school financial management system that incorporates all these audit-busting features and that software is IRIS Financials.

IRIS Financials also includes powerful automation tools and unrivalled flexibility. It’s cloud-based, so there are no hardware requirements and you can use it across any number of locations to view the same accurate, up-to-date information.

Check out IRIS Financials If you’re interested in finding out more about the ultimate tool for school audits and overall financial management.