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2021 IDEA® User of Excellence in External Audit Awarded to Courtney Conner

HOUSTON – August 16, 2021 – Audimation Services, Inc., has selected Courtney Conner with Schneider Downs & Co., Inc. as the recipient of the 2021 U.S. IDEA User of Excellence Award in External Audit. She receives this honor for using data analytics and process automation to meet strategic goals and building professional development opportunities for the firm’s staff.

As an IDEA champion, Conner has led the firm’s Internal Automation and Data Analysis Processing Team (iADAPT) over the past year, which identifies opportunities to apply data analytics and develops IDEAScripts to automate repeatable tasks in order to increase audit efficiency. She has led the iADAPT group in strategic planning and has helped to develop more than 15 new IDEAScripts to streamline audit procedures. Under her direction, the program has experienced substantial growth, including the introduction of a rotational program where staff can ‘rotate’ onto strategic projects and gain more experience using IDEA as an automation tool. 


The iADAPT group continues to push the boundaries of our capabilities in using data analytics and automation and finds new ways that IDEA can enhance the quality and effectiveness of our audits. Together, we’re expanding our library of scripts and templates which ultimately could save hundreds, if not thousands, of hours over time compared to previous methods. It’s truly an honor to receive this award, and I look forward to the continued growth of both our knowledge and use of IDEA.

- Courtney Conner, Schneider Downs & Co., Inc.

Since joining the firm nearly seven years ago, Conner has played an integral part in IDEA user development. She presents at the firm’s continuing education training sessions throughout the year on both technical accounting topics and creative problem solving to demonstrate the firm’s innovative use of data analytics. She also serves as a technical advisor for IDEAScript development and supports the audit department with the rollout of automated procedures.

“One of the reasons IDEA has held its longstanding position as a leader in data analytics is its strong community of data analytics enthusiasts,” said Carolyn Newman, president, Audimation Services. “Courtney Conner has become a go-to resource, helping others advance their use of data analytics to increase productivity and build a knowledgebase within Schneider Downs that gives their firm an edge. We applaud her commitment to advancing the profession.”

Conner is a pivotal contributor to the firm’s IDEA user development initiatives. She has designed and led the development of baseline hands-on training sessions for the past several years, and more recently supervised the release of an audit-specific IDEAScript video series to help colleagues expand their use of IDEA. Conner has also held a seat on the firm’s Audit and Assurance Effectiveness Committee (AAEC), where she shared her knowledge to promote department-wide adoption of IDEAScripts. Through these contributions, Conner has helped Schneider Downs take a leadership role in an industry that continues to evolve and transform with advancing technology.

Conner was nominated by her colleague, Chris Kosty, who received an honorable mention for the 2020 Award. She will publicly receive her award at the 2022 IDEA User Conference.

About Schneider Downs & Co.

Schneider Downs & Co., Inc. has been providing accounting, tax and business advisory services through innovative thought leaders who deliver their expertise to meet the individual needs of each client. Schneider Downs’ client list includes Fortune 500 companies, well-established regional businesses, not-for-profits, and exciting start-ups. Schneider Downs also works with large and small businesses, both publicly and privately held, as well as nonprofit organizations, government entities, service firms and professional associations. Visit

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 . or call 888.641.2800.

About CaseWare International

CaseWare International Inc. is the leading global provider of cloud-enabled audit, financial reporting and data analytics solutions for Accounting firms, Corporations, and Government regulators world-wide.  With efficiency, quality and value in mind, CaseWare provides innovative solutions to over 500,000 users, in 130 countries and in 16 languages.


Authored by: Vaishali Bithale joined Audimation Services in May 2021 as a Marketing Specialist. She comes to Audimation with over 14 years of work experience in Social Media and Digital Marketing Management. Additionally, she has an MBA in Marketing & Public Relation Management and bachelor in mass communication.


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