Is this good or bad? Well, the word “qualified” means two different things in the title. The auditor is a specialist accountant who has to sit and pass a lot of exams, and have supervised professional training, and do continuing professional development, in order to be described as “qualified”. Having a qualified auditor is a good thing, one presumes, and an unqualified auditor is to be avoided. The unqualified auditor may have failed the exams or been struck off.
However, if I say that a man is honest, but qualify it by pointing out that this is only since he got out of prison five years ago, then we have the other meaning of the word “qualified”, and this second meaning is to be found in the expression “Qualified Audit Report”. The audit report can be qualified for a number of reasons, but they all say in effect that you invest further cash in this enterprise at your own risk! Beware!
The European Union gets a qualified audit report every year, usually on the grounds of limitation of scope. This means that the auditors’ usual procedures were frustrated by somebody’s lack of openness or cooperation for reasons which we can guess. With a European referendum on the way, let’s hope that everybody understands that a qualified audit report is bad, but a qualified auditor is good.
David Porthouse & Co is a firm of Carlisle accountants serving clients in Cumbria and North West England. We have a major interest in introducing new technology and we are developing an optical number recognition/datepoint system for scanning bank statements with the intention of reducing the cost of accounts production. We also have a spreadsheet system which can be sent back and forth by e-mail.