ACC 574 WEEK 4 DISCUSSION - 83726

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1) "The Design Phase" Please respond to the following: • Assess the value of involving accountants in the detail design and implementation phases of the SDLC, indicating the risks that may be mitigated related to organizational roles and responsibilities. Provide support for your answer. • Evaluate the independence issues associated with auditing firms providing consulting services in developing and selecting new systems, suggesting how these issues may be mitigated or minimized giving consideration to the constraints imposed by SOX. 2) "Implementation Issues" Please respond to the following: • Assess the value of the system project proposal, providing a recommendation as to how the proposal should be evaluated and prioritized. Explain your approach to resolving issues that arise in the testing phase if bad data is consistently discovered during the phase. • Make a recommendation regarding which phases could be modified without sacrificing data integrity if a system is behind schedule and significantly over budget. Justify your answer. NOTE: MORE THAN ONE ANSWER POSTED FOR THE PRICE OF ONE CHOOSE ANY
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DISCUSSION 1

Assess the value of involving accountants in the detail design and implementation phases of the SDLC, indicating the risks that may be mitigated related to organizational roles and responsibilities. Provide support for your answer.

Accountants are involved with systems in three ways.  The first is as end users who are entering transactions into the system.  The second is as advisors in the system development process to provide input into accurate data processing, and to dentify the need for and application of effective internal controls.  The third is as auditors who will examine and test the effectiveness of the internal controls in place and the accuracy of transactions.   

The Auditor’s Role in Conceptual Systems Design
The auditor is a stakeholder in all financial systems and, thus, has an interest in the conceptual design stage of the system. The auditability of a system depends in part on its design characteristics. Some computer auditing techniques require systems to be designed with special audit features that are integral to the system. These audit features must be specified at the conceptual design stage.

The Auditor’s Role in Systems Analysis
The firm’s auditors (both external and internal) are stakeholders in the proposed system, we will see how certain CAATTs (such as the embedded audit module and the integrated test facility) must be designed into the system during the SDLC. Often, advanced audit features cannot be easily added to existing systems. Therefore, the accountant/auditor should be involved in the needs analysis of the proposed system to determine if it is a good candidate for advanced audit features and, if so, which features are best suited for the system.

Evaluate the independence issues associated with auditing firms providing consulting services in developing and selecting new systems, suggesting how these issues may be mitigated or minimized giving consideration to the constraints imposed by SOX.

Independence would not be impaired by performing separate evaluations that focus on the effectiveness of the client's internal controls. This includes separate evaluations of the client's ongoing monitoring activities.

Services that could be provided by a number of firms. In this case, the fact that the firm is the auditor is incidental and it would generally only be chosen because, for example, it had won a tender process. Examples of such services include:

  • management consultancy
  • tax advice
  • human resources consultancy.

Source: http://www.icaew.com/en/technical/ethics/auditor-independence/provision-of-non-audit-services-to-audit-clients ICEW

Information Technology Auditing and Assurance, Third Edition James A. Hall Copyright 2011 Cengage Learning, Inc;  page 185-188http://www.coursesmart.com/9781439079119/firstsection#X2ludGVybmFsX0J2ZGVwRmxhc2hSZWFkZXI/eG1saWQ9OTc4MTQzOTA3OTExOS9IRU9BLTE=

OR

"The Design Phase" Please respond to the following:

  • Assess the value of involving accountants in the detail design and implementation phases of the SDLC, indicating the risks that may be mitigated related to organizational roles and responsibilities. Provide support for your answer. 
  • Evaluate the independence issues associated with auditing firms providing consulting services in developing and selecting new systems, suggesting how these issues may be mitigated or minimized giving consideration to the constraints imposed by SOX.  

  What is the SDLC?  The SDLC is the system development

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