• Surprise audits are proven to fight fraud

    Four antifraud controls are associated with at least a 50% reduction in both fraud loss and duration, according to “Occupational Fraud 2024: A Report to the Nations” published by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE). They are financial statement audits, reporting hotlines, surprise audits and proactive data analysis. However, the ACFE study also found that two of these — surprise audits and proactive data [...]

    Published On: June 12, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Why audited financials matter

    Reliable financial reporting is key to any company’s success. Here’s why your business should at least consider investing in audited financial statements. Weighing the differences Most businesses maintain an in-house accounting system to manage their financials. The documents your staff prepares through your in-house accounting system are called “internally prepared financial statements.” In many cases, internal financials are perfectly functional for the day-to-day operational needs [...]

    Published On: June 11, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • 4 bookkeeping pitfalls for small businesses to avoid

    Accurate bookkeeping is essential to operating a successful small business. The problems created by inadequate bookkeeping practices can have significant, long-lasting consequences. Here are four common pitfalls — and how to avoid them with the right knowledge and tools. 1. Commingled bank accounts It’s important to maintain a separate dedicated bank account for business transactions. Using the owner’s personal accounts for business purposes can have [...]

    Published On: June 10, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • New survey reveals top audit committee concerns

    Audit committees act as gatekeepers over the accounting and financial reporting processes, including the effectiveness of the company’s control environment. However, as the regulatory landscape becomes increasingly complex and organizations face evolving risks, the scope of an audit committee’s responsibilities may extend beyond traditional financial reporting. Top-of-mind list In March 2024, a survey entitled “Audit Committee Practices Report: Common Threads Across Audit Committees” was published [...]

    Published On: June 9, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • It’s almost time for a midyear checkup on your company’s financial health

    Interim financial reporting is essential to running a successful business. When reviewing midyear financial reports, however, you should recognize their potential shortcomings. These reports might not be as reliable as year-end financials, unless a CPA prepares them or performs agreed-upon procedures on specific accounts. Realize the diagnostic benefits Monthly, quarterly and midyear financial reports can provide insight into trends and possible weaknesses. Reviewing interim results [...]

    Published On: June 8, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • 4 cost-cutting areas to help your business boost profits

    Many businesses focus on selling more products and services to boost profitability. But sales volume alone doesn’t necessarily raise profits. In fact, pushing more sales through a bloated expense structure can result in lower net profits. That’s why it’s important to look at the other side of the ledger — expenses — as you aim to increase profits. A thoughtful way to cut expenses is [...]

    Published On: June 7, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • How to communicate accounting information to laypeople

    Accurate, timely financial information is key to making good decisions for executives, board members, investors and other stakeholders. But not everyone who reads your financial statements will really understand the numbers they receive and what they mean to your organization. Here are some ways to present your financial results in a reader friendly manner. Consider your audience The people who rely on your organization’s financial [...]

    Published On: May 3, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Getting a handle on inventory

    Inventory is a key balance sheet item for many companies. Depending on the nature of your operations, inventory may include raw materials, work-in-progress (WIP) inventory and finished goods. While you need to have enough inventory on hand to meet your customers’ needs, carrying excessive amounts can be costly. Here are some smart ways to manage inventory more efficiently — without compromising revenue and customer service.  [...]

    Published On: May 2, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • ESG audits: Navigating new frontiers in corporate responsibility

    Reporting on environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters is an increasingly crucial area of corporate compliance. While ESG reporting and disclosure apply primarily to public companies, there are efforts aimed at requiring private companies to also report on these matters. For example, the European Union’s Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive requires private organizations that meet specific criteria to publish social and environmental risks and their impacts. [...]

    Published On: May 1, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Auditing WIP today

    External auditors spend a lot of time during fieldwork evaluating how businesses report work in progress (WIP) inventory. Here’s why this warrants special attention and how auditors evaluate whether WIP estimates seem reasonable. Valuing WIP Companies may report various categories of inventory on their balance sheets, depending on the nature of their operations. For companies that convert raw materials into finished goods, a key element [...]

    Published On: April 30, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Mind the GAAP: How to ensure transparency when using non-GAAP metrics

    At Financial Executives International’s Corporate Financial Reporting Insights Conference last November, staff from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) expressed concerns related to the use of financial metrics that don’t conform to U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP). Companies continue to have trouble complying with the SEC’s guidelines on non-GAAP reporting, said Lindsay McCord, chief accountant of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance. Here’s some [...]

    Published On: April 29, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Why it’s important to get your company’s financials done on time

    Have you completed your company’s year-end financial statements yet? Most calendar-year entities issue their year-end financials by March of the following year. Lenders and investors may think the worst if a company’s financial reports aren’t submitted in a timely manner. Here are three assumptions your stakeholders could make when your financial statements are late. 1. Negative financial results No one wants to be the bearer [...]

    Published On: March 5, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Auditing revenue recognition

      The top line of an income statement for a for-profit business is revenue (or sales). Reporting this line item correctly is critical to producing accurate financial statements. Under U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), revenue is recognized when it’s earned. With accrual-basis accounting, that typically happens when goods or services are delivered to the customer, not necessarily when cash is collected from the customer. [...]

    Published On: February 26, 2024Categories: Business, Featured
  • Liquidity overload: Why having too much cash may be bad for business

      In today’s uncertain marketplace, many businesses are stashing operating cash in their bank accounts, even though they might not have imminent plans to deploy their reserves. However, excessive “rainy day” funds could be an inefficient use of capital. Here’s a systematic approach to help estimate reasonable cash reserves and maximize your company’s return on long-term financial positions. What’s the harm in stockpiling cash? An [...]

    Published On: February 21, 2024Categories: Business, Featured