Auditing with ACL

This post is dedicated to the use of the ACL program and how it makes the work of auditors a lot easier. ACL stands for Audit Command Language. You can check out more of it here.

The version of ACL that I have used and what I have in my laptop is the ACL Version 8. It is very helpful in carrying out the audit. This technology enables the user to manipulate and critically examine large amount of data with just some simple clicks on the commands of the software. One can use it to examine sales reports, expenses, inventory, cost of sales, even PPE among others.

The premise of the software is simple: you build a data table which is based on a valid report from the client, determine its validity, from a valid table you then work on it using the different tools in the ACL program and come up with exceptions that would be noted in the process if any.

Usually, the best file format to build on an ACL table is dbase IV. Normally, the files maintained for the various reports are in excel file, thus it would necessitate that you learn how to prepare these files for ACL.

From then on, upon building a valid ACL table, you can now use the different tools to analyze the data. Some of the more usual and useful of these tools would include:

TOTAL FIELDS – this would give you a summation for a certain data the user desires.

GAPS/DUPLICATES – this one is very useful for checking on pre-numbered documents. You can check on the sequencing or if there are duplicated or missing documents that may indicate an exception.

STATISTICS – the command would give an overview on the desired field in terms of the number of positive, negative and zero numbers, as well as the total amount. Another important feature is that you can set to highlight say the top ten highest and lowest numbers in the field. And of course these are linked to the data table, such that you can proceed to the table with just a click to check on the other details of that amount.

AGE – this would definitely help in analyzing the aging of Receivables. With this, you can sort out the oldest items from the group. This would also include the record count, the amount and the percentage of such to the total field.

CLASSIFY – for data that has different types, you can use this command. This would give you the number of records for each type and the percentage to the total. A graphical representation is also an option and is automatic in the ACL program, you just have to select if the output you want is a graph.

There are a lot of other useful tools in ACL, but I’ll leave it to you to explore and discover. This would be just some of the basics, and once you have built a valid ACL data table, then you are good to go.

Remember, the efficiency and effectiveness of using the ACL rests on the information you obtain (client reports) from which you build the ACL data table. This should be in such a perfect format that contains all the information you need to examine.

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~ by licruz on August 12, 2008.

One Response to “Auditing with ACL”

  1. Welcome to ACL 101… Nyahahhahahha!!! =P

    I didn’t know you’re into blogging 😉

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