When it comes to your security and compliance objectives, quality is everything.
Quality is an obsession at A-LIGN. Not only is the quality of our audits a reflection on our expertise and capabilities as a firm, it also has a direct impact on our clients’ ability to move forward with confidence and success.
When choosing the right provider for your security and compliance needs, we strongly recommend inquiring about their quality measures and control model. Providers should have a model or framework to reference when asked about quality and have a track record that supports their credibility in this area. Our quality model consists of the following principles:
A-LIGN’s diverse team stays aware on trends within all of A-LIGN’s industries and service offerings. Through involvement with organizations such as the AICPA Council, PCI Security Standards Council, ALTA, FedRAMP and HITRUST, A-LIGN’s professionals are able to provide your organizations with advice that is relevant to your needs. You can see more about the organizations that A-LIGN is involved with and certifications that A-LIGN’s professionals hold by clicking here.
Our standards of service demand exceptional work from our team, which is why A-LIGN has instituted a formal training plan to ensure that each auditor masters their specific role and client responsibilities.
Every A-LIGN auditor undergoes formal audit training for each industry they serve, as well as the technology and platforms related to their clients’ audits. This training is conducted several days each quarter to the firm as a whole and through small group training on specific topics. Equipped with this knowledge, our consultants are able to deliver the highest quality audits while serving as a resource and a knowledgeable business advisor for security and compliance issues your company may face.
Standardized Audit Methodology
As a global service provider, it is essential for A-LIGN’S proprietary audit methodologies to be standard and institutionalized across our firm. With centralized audit tools, work paper documentation, and reporting, our standard audit methodology ensures superior quality and performance by our audit professionals ensuring that clients will experience the same level of quality from all of our team members.
Typically, your organization will not see the planning documents or work papers that guide our audit process. As such, the culmination of audit work is a single report that your organization receives at the end of our engagement. To the untrained eye, these reports can be overwhelming – which is why A-LIGN has built a standardized format to help clients navigate our findings more efficiently and effectively, while ensuring the highest quality deliverable from our audit professionals.
Centralized Reporting Personnel
We believe that quality is as much a result of concentrated and specialized effort as it is a comprehensive service. We’ve built a team structure that allows audit professionals to focus on their work, while relying on trained word processing personnel to translate their findings into a report. These personnel are specifically trained in A-LIGN’S standardized methodology, further ensuring that your organization receives the highest quality report in the appropriate, familiar format.
Pre-Delivery Audit Report Checklist
A-LIGN has developed a thorough pre-delivery audit report checklist, against which every report is cross-referenced to ensure completion and accuracy. This quality measure ensures that our clients are able to review the report and focus on its findings – rather than scrutinizing details and intricacies of the formatting.
Surprise Inspection of Workpapers and Deliverables
To support our quality control process even after the report is issued, A-LIGN performs a final post-issuance review. This process includes a thorough workpaper review of a random sample of reports issued to ensure that our quality assurance procedures were properly followed. This review is conducted on a surprise basis to ensure A-LIGN’s auditors are performing at their highest standards, and provides an additional opportunity for training and evaluation.
Public Company Accounting Oversight Board
A-LIGN is registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) as Price and Associates CPAs, LLC. The PCAOB was created to protect publicly-owned companies and their investors by overseeing audits. As a PCAOB-registered auditor, A-LIGN is subject to oversight by PCAOB to ensure that our reports are informative, accurate, and independent.
The American Institute of CPAs Peer Review Program
A-LIGN is enrolled in the American Institute of CPAs’ (AICPA) Peer Review Program as Price and Associates CPAs, LLC. As program participants, we have agreed to comply with the AICPA’s quality control standards and must have a peer review performed on our auditing practice every 3 years.
ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board
A-LIGN is an accredited certification body for ISO 27001 which requires annual on-site witness audits from ANSI-ASQ National Accreditation Board (ANAB) at our office to review our management system. This process includes a review of our auditors’ qualification, adherence to our methodology, and compliance with published ISO standards.
American Association for Laboratory Accreditation
American Association for Laboratory Accreditation (A2LA) is the accreditation body selected by FedRAMP to accredit auditors as part of the FedRAMP program. In addition to the rigorous application process that evaluates the quality and competency of A-LIGN as an audit firm, A2LA performs annual onsite witness audits of A-LIGN. This annual audit evaluates the ongoing quality and competency of A-LIGN in its role as a 3PAO.
At the core of A-LIGN’S impartiality policy is A-LIGN’S management’s commitment to maintaining independence, in fact, perception and removing threats to impartiality. A-LIGN defines threats as a relationship that threatens the impartiality based on ownership, governance, management, personnel, shared resources, finances, contracts, marketing, and payment of a sales commission and/or other inducement for the referral of new clients.
Review and analysis of impartiality are conducted on an ongoing basis as well as annually with regards to all prospects, clients, and personnel to ensure all conflicts of interest and threats to impartiality are identified, reviewed, analyzed, resolved, and monitored. In addition, A-LIGN’S review process ensures that we do not perform audit services for clients where non-audit services have been performed and that ISO 27001 management consulting services are not performed by A-LIGN.
A-LIGN’S leadership ensures adherence to the impartiality policy through periodic management reviews, automated monitoring tools, internal audits, and formal risk assessments of our audit processes.
A-LIGN operates under and complies with the independence requirements established by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, ISO 17021:2015 and FedRAMP and has developed this impartiality policy and supporting procedures to ensure ongoing compliance.
Interested in discussing our firm’s quality measures and control models with a security and compliance professional? Reach out to A-LIGN at 1-888-702-5546 or complete the form to reach us via e-mail.