An innovative solution that proactively manages quality
Johannesburg, 19 August 2022: Powering 20 000 users across the African continent, Caseware Africa, a division of Adapt IT, is a global leader in audit and financial reporting software. With decades of expertise in helping auditors and accountants automate compliance, Caseware Africa has introduced a brand-new cloud-based app to help firms manage their System of Quality Management: SQM Quality.
SQM Quality is designed by audit, data, and quality experts, and provides a quality management system intended to assist firms in fully, and efficiently, complying with the requirements of the International Standard on Quality Management 1 (ISQM 1), whilst leveraging the benefits of technology to proactively facilitate quality management, and ultimately, promote compliance.
The industry shift from the International Standard on Quality Control 1 (ISQC 1) to ISQM 1 has signalled a subtle, yet significant change in focus from ‘control’ to ‘management’. In pursuit of compliance to the new standard, professional audit and accounting firms providing services in various fields, have been required to update their engagements and processes to establish a system of quality management that extends beyond the possession of a manual with policies and procedures.
“In light of how the new standard has done away with most of the mandatory policies and procedures previously included in ISQC 1 and leaving it up to the firms to determine what’s most appropriate for their specific circumstances, it’s more important than ever for every employee to be their own compliance officer. In addition, it is imperative that firms establish a firm-wide environment of collaboration between people and technology to address the problems of the past, and ultimately make compliance more efficient,” says Christiaan Steyn, Assurance Product Manager at Caseware Africa.
SQM Quality empowers finance professionals to design, operate, and monitor their quality management system through the processes of establishing quality objectives, identifying, and assessing risks, and designing and implementing risk responses, in a manner that is effortless and efficient. It also includes a component that allows for the monitoring and remediation of processes to drive continual improvement of the system and, ultimately, the firm’s ability to fulfil the requirements of ISQM 1.
The Benefits of SQM Quality:
- SQM Quality empowers professionals and firms to easily attend to all parts of the quality management system.
- Numerous international standards are supported, empowering firms to meet the requirements of various local markets across the world with a single system solution.
- User permissions differentiate between roles and responsibilities across the firm.
Responsible parties are guided to document their understanding of the firm, and the nature of its services, to assist in identifying and assessing quality risks.
- Firms can select objectives, risks, and policy and procedure responses, from a pre-populated library that can be customised and expanded upon as needed.
- Network firms can export network-wide objectives, risks, and responses to member firms.
- A built-in form builder enables firms to design tasks as instructions to users to direct, and track, the completion of actions linked to policy and procedures responses.
- Throughout the process, users can hyperlink to documents and other records saved elsewhere on Caseware Cloud for ease of reference and secure storage.
- SQM Quality includes a firm-specific quality risk assessment matrix that automates the identification of quality risks for which responses are required.
- The user with the final responsibility of the system of quality management will be able to review dashboards of information and oversee the publishing, or export, of that information as required by the firm’s operations.
Designed to optimise the changes and opportunities of ISQM 1, SQM Quality enables firms to design, operate, and monitor their system of quality management with ease, offering a single solution that attends to all parts in a way that is automated, accurate, and complete.
“In a rapidly developing world where spreadsheets are no longer the answer, everyone is accountable and collaboration is key. A solution like SQM Quality becomes more than a ‘nice to have’, it’s a necessity and an investment in efficiency, accuracy, and automation that will get things done – and done properly.” Steyn concludes.