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| TRANSPARENCY REPORT

11

PUBLIC INTEREST COMMITTEE

the people who deliver audit truly appreciate

the worth of what they do and the fact that

how they act contributes to our wider society

and societal values. We need to empower our

people to feel that high-quality audit is not just

a firm expectation but is in the wider public

interest too. Messages from management are

important but we need to foster a culture of

supporting staff to perform and to impress

on them that they should be proud of being

in the auditing profession. More widely, the

audit market and regulator need, in turn, to

encourage auditors by promoting the excellent

work done by individuals and firms rather than

concentrating simply on very rare high-profile

failures. Obviously serious errors of judgement

or independence lapses must be addressed but

pride in the profession must be engendered to

continue to both produce high quality work and

ensure that we attract and retain talent.

The 'new' PIC has a very strong commitment

to ensuring that the culture of RSM engenders

audit quality. Feedback from staff at all levels

has shown that, not only do they think audit

quality is of paramount importance to the

firm, but that messages on key contributors to

audit quality such as scepticism have reached

the front line loud and strong. Even more

encouraging is that, not only do they believe

that challenging management is important

but they feel supported by the Responsible

Individuals (RIs) in doing so. Our staff appear

happy to ask clients difficult questions and it is

clear that the clients we want to work with are

the ones who appreciate a robust audit.

Having said this, there will always be a lot of

work to be done to ensure we deliver highquality audits. Our challenge

is to continue to

engender a culture that lives and breathes audit

quality from the Tone at the Top to the new

recruits. We need to ensure that people feel that

they are rewarded for delivering high quality

and that the appraisal system encourages the

right behaviours. We have to ensure that people

know what high-audit quality looks like and

have the skills to think critically. These cannot

just be taught in the classroom; it has to also be

gained through experience eg the whole audit

team, including the most junior, attending audit

committee meetings.

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