ISA for LCE Opinion Piece: I need your help

help needed urgently
Past President of ICAEW Martyn Jones, who I had the privilege of working with to change some of the Institutes ethical guidance some years ago, has been working hard to support small business and small firm audit practitioners. He has asked if SPA can assist him with his current great work.
Martyn is currently developing some material for IFAC International Federation of Accountants on the merits of jurisdictional authorities such as the Financial Reporting Council and similar bodies in other countries adopting the recent International Standard on Auditing on Audits of Financial Statements of Less Complex Entities (the ISA – International Standards on Auditing – for LCE). This could be a standalone alternative of 158 pages as compared to the full ISA series which runs to over 1,000 pages. He and Malcolm Bacchus, the next ICAEW President are due to meet the FRC on this shortly. The FRC is yet to be persuaded of the merits of their case.
Martyn’s background includes being about forty years ago Secretary of the UK and Irish Auditing Practices Committee when we had the one-page Auditor’s Operational Standard, Auditing Guidelines and the green True & Fair Bulletins aimed especially at small practice firms.
He would be grateful for some responses to the following questions from current and past auditors:
  1. If you have given up audit work, why did you do so? Did it include the length and complexity of the auditing standards?
  2. If you still carry out audits, how do you find doing them based on the existing ISAs?
  3. How would using a 158-page standard based on objectives, principles-based requirements and short ‘small firm friendly’ guidance paragraphs compare with using the full International Standards on Auditing
  4. If you had to do less box ticking would you perform a better audit, and if so, why?
  5. Would your audit clients and staff welcome the ISA for LCE, and if so, why?
  6. If you are no longer an auditor why did you give up. Was it lack of client audits or regulation?
Please answer Martyn at and copy me at so that I can get your response direct. We must get this valuable insight material by the end of this coming week. Many thanks for your continuing support on this important subject. Best wishes, Howard
PS: See Martyn’s LinkedIn bio PS: Many thanks to our member Peter Hollis for his contribution

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