Difference between Audit and Investigation

Main difference

The main difference between audit and investigation is that audit is an evaluation or authentication of an individual, system or an organization, while investigation is an in-depth analysis or inspection of activities to achieve the defined objective.

Audit vs. Investigation

The audit is displayed to confirm the level of reliability and fairness of the tax accounts of an individual or an association, while the investigation is an in-depth survey to obtain evidence of a particular circumstance. The scope of the audit is creating the morale of the verification, while the scope of the investigation is based on expressions of commitment. Auditing is a method to find whether the results of accounting statistics are precisely in accordance with detailed rules or not, while investigation is a simple consideration of particular procedures to highlight a statement.

The audit report is delivered to interested parties such as shareholders, managers, contractors, etc., while the investigation report is delivered to the party that planned the investigation. The audit is carried out on behalf of the corporation manager, while the investigation can be carried out on behalf of the third party. In audit, staff do not personally inspect, while in investigation, workers inspect in person.

The audit report is organized according to the performance, while the investigation report is organized according to the condition requirement The purpose of the audit is to find out whether the balance of the item in question presents the fair opinion or not, while the investigation is preparing for a particular persistence according to the need of the situation. The audit is convened by a certified public accountant (CA) while the investment is made by experts in their profession, it is not necessary for a researcher to be a certified accountant.Comparative chart

Auditing Research
It is a verification of a person, system or organization It is an in-depth investigation to find out the truth and get the definitive task.
Time limit
Annually As per requirement
Interpreted by
Chartered accountant Experts
Yes No
Narrow Large
Routine process It is not a regular process
Nature of the report
general Confidential
Appointed by
Shareholders management

What is the audit?

The audit is a systematic investigation of an individual’s tax return to provide an opinion on accurate and fair points of view. The term individual used here refers to all groups, whether they are income-generating or any liberal institution. The main purpose of the audit is to explore and report the level of correctness and consistency of the financial statements of any object. In addition, it confirms whether the unit analytically maintains the records of accounts, brochures and receipts or not. The auditor completes the entire audit process.

Auditing is a prevalent method for all the organization that is performing annually. Auditing is generally using in accounting to confirm the intensity and consistency of facts showing in the reports. Auditing completes anytime, and auditors keep some essential points in their mind while making a report that, first is the research of the financial statement is creating on satisfactory accounting strategies and it is a reliable presentation, second is relevant Rules are necessary to follow while preparing reports. The third is all substantial realities are openly revealing in the financial statements.

The audit is performed in two ways: the internal auditor or the external auditor. The internal auditor is a worker of the organization who is appointed by the management of the organization, while the external auditor selects by the government from the external certified public accounting firm (CPA). An audit disseminates all the accurate statements in the financial statements in order to discover their truthfulness. An audit period generally covers the client’s accounting year. And the audit results are widely used.

What is research?

An investigation is the procedure of full inspection of stocks for secured purposes. The act of investigating is the study to discover something in particular. It is the main theme in journalism to investigate many cases and through this process to prepare a report on the situation. An investigation of any company or business association aims to complete a systematic and essential review of the books of accounts along with the past and present transaction records of an individual. It is shown for a particular purpose to represent a fact and with the help of evidence, introduce a reality. Investigation is defined by what the party on whose behalf the investigation is undertaken plans to accomplish.

In the progression of the investigation, the most common are the employees, including in observation, inquiry, penetration, questioning and assessment, etc. The investigation method is carried out by a professional team that has certification of defined facts according to the needs of the association without any particular period. There is no legal need to expose information in an exam. The investigation is merely exceptional, it is not commonly done in all organizations, because it is not the regular procedure and the results of the investigation are useful only for the client.

The appointment of an investigator is carried out by managers, and it is not the natural process that only takes place according to the needs of the organization. They are experts in their profession. There is no such legal responsibility in favor of the investigation. Surprisingly, it can happen at any time.

Key differences

  1. The audit is a standard inspection, while the investigation is precarious.
  2. The audit is carried out every year. On the other hand, research is carried out according to the need of an organization.
  3. The audit is carried out by auditors. Rather, research is played by experts.
  4. The audit is mandatory for all companies. On the other hand, an investigation is optional.
  5. The appointment of an auditor in the audit process is confirmed by the shareholders, while the selection of the investigator in the investigation process is confirmed by management.
  6. The scope of the audit is limited; on the other hand, the field of research is wide.
  7. The nature of audit reports is general. On the other hand, the reporting nature of the investigation is confidential.

Final Thought

The audit is a general process typical of all organizations. Research is quite rare and not common in all organizations. People are easily confused between these two terms due to lack of knowledge and inadequate understanding. The audit report is sent to interested parties such as shareholders, etc., but the investigation report is delivered to those who organized the investigation.

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