Type: Business
Pages: 4 | Words: 1182
Reading Time: 5 Minutes

Walmart is an American multinational corporation. It has over eight thousand department stores and warehouses across the globe. Walmart offers products in nine different retail divisions. This means that Walmart offers almost all the products ranging from hardware equipment to household goods in all their departmental stores across the globe. In addition, the company is divided into three different divisions that run the company’s daily business. The first department is the Walmart Stores Division that manages the American division. The second department is Sam’s club division that manages department stores that have memberships for their clients across the globe. Finally, the Walmart international division is the other division that manages all the international departmental stores.

The Walmart‘s Main Strategy

The company’s main strategy is to provide their customers with a variety of products at their convenience. In this case, they are continuing to attract a wide range of customers increasing their customer base leading to high profitability levels. Since Walmart is a multinational corporation, it faces stiff competition from different competitors based on their location. In America, Kmart among others is their principal competitor. In Canada, Real Canadian superstores are their main competitors among others. Across the globe, other different competitors exist. Walmart’s main objectives are to increase returns, grow in the American market and expand their stores across the globe. Walmart’s main strategies are to conduct customer research, improve shareholders’ value and increase employee value.

In Walmart Company, certain areas pose an immense risk while performing audits. Henceforth, they require a lot of time and controls to ensure effective auditing in the company. The first area that might pose a significant risk is the implementation of the new system in the company. According to the market environment, companies need to change their technology constantly in order to gain competitive advantage. For this reason, Walmart has already automated their system. In this case, it is an immense risk since there might be loopholes in the new system causing irregularities. Therefore, professionalism and time are necessary for this area.

The second area that poses an enormous risk is the acquisition of new companies. One of Walmart’s objectives, through acquisitions, help in the expansion of the company both locally and internationally. In this case, new companies that Walmart is acquiring often have different policies. As a result, they might affect the company’s financial health. Moreover, financial statements might start to post misstatements in the end of the financial year. In addition, international acquisitions mean that they face different economies, taxation, laws, and cultures. This will be difficult since Walmart has to make changes for the different policies to be compatible. Additionally, Walmart needs to adapt to the new laws and cultures of the newly acquired company. For this reason, this will undoubtedly affect Walmart’s financial figures. Therefore, while auditing, this area will require due diligence on the part of the auditing team.

Liquidity is another area posing a significant threat to Walmart Company. Although Walmart has excellent disclosure controls and procedures in financial reporting, liquidity is posing a significant threat. According to their financial reports, Walmart has been acquiring new companies to expand their business. As a result, this has led to difficulties in liquidity. This is because most of the numerous assets they have been acquiring. In addition, this tends to create inaccuracies in the financial reports. For instance, during the financial crisis, Walmart was also hit by the crisis facing liquidity risks. In this case, there might be difficulties in financial reporting. For this reason, this area needs due diligence from the part of the auditing team.

Walmart’s Financial Statements

According to the previous financial reporting and audits at Walmart, management has been coming up with several opinions. The management opinion on financial reporting is that their disclosure controls and procedures have been consistence. This means that there are no changes in the procedures. In addition, the management and the auditors have been saying that Walmart Company has excellent financial procedures. According to form 10-k, Walmart has been providing timely disclosures of the financial statements to the relevant parties for timely decision-making. For this reason, they have excellent disclosure controls that lead to tactical decisions.

According to the analysis, certain amount of expertise is going to be needed to audit Walmart Company. First, information technology audit experts are going to be needed in auditing the new automated system implemented by Walmart. This is because the existing auditors might not have knowledge of the new automated system. In addition, the new system posses a significant amount of risk since it might present errors in the preparation of financial statements. In this case, the expert will take time to learn how the new system works for purposes of effective auditing.

Secondly, an auditing team will be required to travel to the newly acquired companies and other international branches of Walmart. Currently, Walmart has been acquiring new companies for the expanding the company both locally and internationally. The auditors will take time trying to learn the different procedures and policies of the new companies and branches. In this situation, they are going to see whether the new companies have loopholes or compatibility with Walmart. Additionally, they are going to conduct an audit of these companies to eliminate risks.

The first financial statements to be audited would be the consolidated statement of income and the consolidated statement of equity. This is because they will provide the bases of financial health or process of Walmart. Additionally, consolidated statement of cash flows will be audited. In this case, the auditors will be assessing the liquidity risks of the company. Therefore, they will be able to establish any misstatements from the information in reports. For this reason, they will be able to work back tracing the different transactions.

The key policies to be audited relate to the acquisition of the new companies. The auditors will try to evaluate the policy Walmart uses when they are acquiring new companies. In this case, the auditors will try to assess whether there are any issues that will result to misstatements. Another key policy the auditors will be interested in checking is how the company acquires and disposes assets. This is because the management can be tempted to perform unscrupulous deals. As a result, it might result to misstatements in the financial statements.

The first additional information that will be required from the management is a list of senior employees who are assigned critical roles in the company. This is because they are prone to risks that might affect the financial statements. In this case, either they might be tempted to commit fraud or they might be working under undue influence. For this reason, this might be of significant help to the auditors.

Secondly, information about the company structure will be of significant help to the auditors. This is because they will be able to trace how different transactions flow in Walmart. Additionally, auditors will be able to know how financial and other relevant information move in the organizations. As a result, they will be able to assess where the misstatements or mistakes are might be originating from. This will be extremely helpful to the auditors.

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