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Anyone for an auditing career?

17 August 2018

The auditing sector (in Holland) could lose over half of its trainees within two years, according to a new study from Nyenrode Business Universiteit.

Auditing firms’ focus on maximising profits puts high levels of pressure on overstretched trainees, compromising the quality of audit work.

And, instead of introducing superficial fixes like health-themed weeks and sports facilities the firms need to tackle the heavy workloads, high pressure, and lack of professional development.

If the firms don’t take these issues seriously then PQs will leave the profession in droves, says the study.

Assistant professor, Marlies de Vries, said: “During the busy season young professionals spend an average of 60 hours a week working and studying. This is because of capacity shortage, unrealistic schedules and high client expectations. Auditing organisations also reward young professionals who embrace heavy workloads, which has caused this to become part of the culture as well.”

She claimed that work pressure has been a neglected topic in the industry, with only lip service being paid to tackling the issues that PQs are facing.

De Vries told PQ magazine that given the international structure of Dutch firms he wouldn’t be surprised if a UK study didn’t mirror his findings.

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