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Press Releases

2019 CaseWare IDEA® User of Excellence Award Winner Selected

Leslie Kirsch with WithumSmith+Brown Honored for Helping Professionals Embrace Data Analytics


HOUSTON – June 26, 2019 – Audimation Services, Inc., has selected Leslie Kirsch, CFE, CISA, CIDA, Director, Central Analytics with WithumSmith+Brown, PC (“Withum”) as the recipient of the 2019 U.S. IDEA User of Excellence Award. She is being recognized for her longstanding use of data analytics to help both clients and peers apply technology to increase efficiency, identify fraud and explore data from different perspectives.
 

Withum is a top-25 public accounting firm focused on forward-thinking and technology-driven advisory services. Kirsch was nominated by senior partner Scott Price for her success in architecting and operating Withum’s Data Analytics Center of Excellence, which provides centralized analysis support to the entire firm.
 

She leads a team of full-time data analytics specialists and part-time contributors who are embedded in different offices and engagement teams across the firm. Her team supports Withum’s 3,500-plus external financial audits, as well as the firm’s forensic accounting, tax, and advisory practices by designing and documenting innovative analytical procedures. Kirsch used IDEA to design and automate new procedures, which resulted in efficiency gains as high as 90 percent for many engagements.
 

The central analysis group supports teams with data extraction and transformation problems, assessing the reliability of their data, identifying fraud and errors, and transitioning from sampling to 100 percent review methodologies. Kirsch and her team also provide training and consulting services to internal and external auditors who are looking to improve their own organization’s use of audit data analytics.
 

“Advancements in technology are reshaping how we work,” said Kirsch. “Early on in my career, data analytics helped me get answers to critical questions and empowered me to deliver more value to the organization. One of my goals is to move our profession into the future of audit by using data analytics to increase our efficiency and effectiveness. I’ve used IDEA for nearly 15 years to solve tough challenges, and I’m both honored and thrilled to receive this award.”


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Advancements in technology are reshaping how we work. Early on in my career, data analytics helped me get answers to critical questions and empowered me to deliver more value to the organization. One of my goals is to move our profession into the future of audit by using data analytics to increase our efficiency and effectiveness. I’ve used IDEA for nearly 15 years to solve tough challenges, and I’m both honored and thrilled to receive this award.

- Leslie Kirsch, CFE, CISA, CIDA, Director, Central Analytics with WithumSmith+Brown

“Professionals like Leslie Kirsch are instrumental in elevating auditors to become sought-after resources to their clients and within their organizations,” said Carolyn Newman, President, Audimation Services. “Beyond helping the firm’s clients achieve success using data analytics, she has encouraged her peers to embrace technology. This is what drives our profession forward and we applaud the work she has achieved during her impressive career.”
 

Over the past year, Kirsch revamped Withum’s data analytics curriculum for auditors and created a community of practice within the firm. She has provided dozens of new analysts with initial hands-on software and conceptual analytics topics, trained the company’s new audit managers on brainstorming innovative analytics, and created a coaching program to provide continual support for the firm’s data analysts. She has also developed firm-wide guidance on the use of analytical procedures in accordance with professional audit and consulting standards.
 

Before joining Withum, Kirsch worked at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) where she used IDEA to uncover multiple instances where government agencies awarded contracts to vendors and contractors that were on the Excluded Parties List System, totaling hundreds of thousands of dollars in some cases. She also used data analytics to identify multiple cases of public or private schools that hired or retained individuals with histories of sexual misconduct.
 

Kirsch is a frequent speaker at conferences on the use of data analytics for the accounting and investigative professions. She serves as a hands-on IDEA trainer for AICPA, ACFE, and IIA chapters, as well as for private events. She has also provided support and training in IDEA and data analytics for accounting educators, including providing hands-on IDEA training for their students and presenting on careers in audit data analytics.
 

About Audimation Services, Inc.
 

Founded in 1992, Audimation Services, Inc. is a leader in providing data analysis technology to help companies understand their data, assess risks, test controls, and fight fraud. As the sole U.S. distributor of IDEA® Data Analysis and SmartExporter for SAP®, we help our clients maximize their technology investments by providing support, training and other valuable resources. For more information about Audimation Services, visit www.audimation.com or call 888.641.2800.
 

About Withum
 

Established in 1974, Withum is a national top-ranking public accounting firm providing advisory, tax and audit services to businesses and individuals on a local-to-global scale. Withum is headquartered in Princeton, N.J., and has a presence in major financial centers including New York City, NY; Boston, MA; Philadelphia, PA; Washington, DC.; and Orlando, FL. Withum also is an independent member of HLB, the global advisory and accounting network.
 

About CaseWare Analytics
 

CaseWare Analytics is home to CaseWare IDEA® Data Analysis and the CaseWare Monitor continuous monitoring platform. Our software solutions are built on a foundation of industry best practices and expertise, enabling audit, compliance and finance professionals to assess risk, gather audit evidence, uncover trends, identify issues and provide the intelligence needed to make informed decisions, ensure compliance and improve business processes. We offer solutions that meet the needs of auditors, analysts, purchasing card managers, compliance officers and more. With 40 distribution offices worldwide, CaseWare Analytics’ products and solutions serve more than 400,000 professionals in 90 countries. To learn more visit casewareanalytics.com.
 

IDEA is a registered trademark of CaseWare International Inc.

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