Get the right auditor for your business

Proxima's custom audit tender service ensures your business gets the most value from the right audit firm.

image1.png

The current situation

Prior to 2011, the average tenure of a FTSE100 audit firm was 49 years, with the majority of firms never having changed auditors in living memory, some being retained for over a century.

The Competition & Markets Authority’s perception was that the costs of audit were not reflective of the competitive landscape, nor were FTSE businesses realising true value or quality of service from their auditor. As such, publicly listed companies are now being forced to review their audit service provider.

But...

...if companies have not reviewed their audit provider in nearly 50 years, how do they expect to drive the most value from an audit tender process – let alone choose the right audit firm for their business?

Guy Strafford, Chief Client Officer, offers an overview of Proxima's custom audit tender services

A successful audit tender process should...

  • Highlight which providers truly understand your  business’ drivers and underlying market issues to provide the most value additive service
  • Identify ways in which the auditors can add greater  value to your business, improving the quality of management  support and identifying opportunities for improvement
  • Be simple, open, minimally disruptive for operational  teams and straightforward
  • Improve overall investor relations by offering clarity around the decision making process

A poor audit tender process could...

  • Result in a long drawn out process –  wasting unnecessary time, cash and resources – which could be better invested elsewhere  in your business
  • End up delivering “more of the same” - missed opportunities  by preserving the status quo and avoiding challenge
  • Lead to selecting the wrong partner – not aligned to your business or your needs
  • Lead to fines / jail time for mis-reporting  or missed details

Proof we deliver

  • FTSE 250 Packaging & Logistics company Proxima reviewed and tendered the statutory audit following an M&A situation – reinvigorating the overall audit approach to consider future risks, rather than the business as it was.

  • Proxima simplified... a highly complex situation with two previous incumbents and selected the most suitable audit partner; reduced the audit fee by 40% (over £1m); ran the entire process, from start to finish, in 12 weeks.

Richard James, Category Director - Professional and Financial Services, offers an overview of Proxima's best practice audit tender services

  • FTSE100 Oil & Gas company  Proxima managed the end-to-end tender process within a global firm, assessing capabilities, processes and cultural fit across some challenging geographies and supported the final audit committee recommendations.
  • Proxima delivered... a comprehensive assessment of the audit market resulting in a clear recommendation to the audit committee; smooth transition of auditors due to robust planning; significant reduction in audit costs through changed approach to the audit tender process.
  • FTSE 100 Retail company  Proxima managed all aspects of the audit tender process, including a briefing day for all participants and the final assessment criteria. What started as a simple requirement to compare like-for-like quickly shifted to focus more on added value and appropriate cultural fit.
  • Proxima coached...  a sceptical management team through the audit tender and selection process; selected an audit firm that was aligned with the business culture; identified significant opportunities for added value services at no additional cost.

Why have we been so successful?

The process of tendering statutory audit is often managed by the chair of the audit committee and the group CFO. It’s rare that these individuals manage a traditional tender process. Additionally, the nature of these direct, long standing relationships can often reduce the objectivity around the decision making process.

To complicate matters further, in-house procurement teams are unexposed to the audit market and struggle to understand the nature of the relationships and decision-making criteria required. There is no “industry standard” approach and with such a low volume of activity to treat as a precedent, your in-house team will be learning as they go.

What we offer

With a best-practice, proven approach to reviewing and tendering audit services, Proxima acts as a central interface between your executive board, audit committee and audit firm.

Our custom audit tender service simplifies a potentially lengthy, complex process and offers an independent view of the audit market.

Working alongside our clients, Proxima's unique approach offers...

...the audit committee an opportunity to test the independence and objectivity of the audit relationship.

...the finance team an opportunity to challenge participating audit firms on their ability to think differently about the services they are offering. At the same time, gleaning new ideas from the different experiences each of the audit firms are bringing to the discussion.

...the company an opportunity to receive more value from audit services – increased efficiency, cost improvements – and the opportunity to approach the audit itself differently. 


“Following a transformational acquisition, we had a unique opportunity to evaluate our external auditors and ensure we were receiving an effective and high quality audit service. During the tender process, Proxima provided procurement expertise and assistance which helped to drive real benefits to our business.”

Finance Director Operations, FTSE 250 company

 

“Proxima helped us to focus on the key cultural, quality and service factors involved in our decision-making process, that ultimately led to the selection of the right audit provider for us. As a result we will see significant added value from our audit provider, without incurring additional fees.”

Chief Financial Officer, FTSE 100 company  

 

Most importantly, Proxima’s unique approach to audit tendering has resulted in our clients selecting the right auditor – one that understands, supports and enhances their corporate aims.

 

Free Guide

Download our audit tendering best practices guide

 

5 key recommendations for maximising your audit tender process

FREE GUIDE


Download our best practices guide offering 5 key recommendations for maximising your audit tender process.

Buying statutory audit is not like buying stationery, engineered products or cleaning services. There isn’t a fixed specification of requirements, and outputs may vary depending on the construct of your business. Finding the right partner is often more important than getting the best price.

Use the form to the left to download our best practices guide.