I’ve seen growing chatter about streamlining audit letter response workflow management. So with it was with great interest that I tuned in to WilmerHale’s case study presentation at the recent ILTA>ON conference. And I wasn’t the only one taking note — the firm was a finalist for ILTA’s “Transformative Project of the Year” award.
It was a great presentation (I confess their thematic “Star Wars” introduction didn’t hurt at all, in my book). And I found myself motivated to generate a summary of their particular solution story, with some highlights below of the complete version you here: “Audit Response Letters, Rebels & Risk Management: A Compliance Saga” —
At the session, Miranda Perkins (Knowledge Manager) and Mary Goldsmith (Business Relationship Manager) started things off just my speed…
The Wilmer team provided a very clear and concise overview of the audit letter risk management problem:
- “When a client prepares audited financial statements, they are required to disclose any event that may affect their financial status, including pending and potential litigation.”
- “The auditor confirms management’s assessment of these risks by reaching out to their lawyers.”
- “The audit letter process is the means by which the accountant obtains that confirmation from us [the law firm].”
The Wilmer team shares how they designed and implemented a solution to automate this, with software-driven document creation and process workflow management (notifications, reminders, tracking, and reporting).
- The Wilmer team reports that the new system slashed manual and repetitive work, making the process 36% more efficient by their metrics. That translated into saving hundreds of hours in short order, and earning significant kudos from lawyers and cheers from paralegals.
- Seriously — partners on the audit committee called the new solution “magical” and “revolutionary” — quite the reviews indeed.
- In the case of conflicts staff, the time they spend responding to audit letter request tasks has been slashed by 85%.
There’s more to the story, so see my complete article at: “Audit Response Letters, Rebels & Risk Management: A Compliance Saga” and give it a “like” on LinkedIn, if you’re so inclined.