Corporate Governance is Important for your Clients

Accountant's Minute 153

Welcome to Accountants Minute.

Corporate governan­­­­­­­ce is important for your clients.  That is why our associated company, ESS Small Business, is presenting the Corporate Governance Network, which commences on Tuesday 29th May 2018.

Why is Corporate Governance Network important for your clients?  I really believe that company directors of small/medium enterprises need to develop a better understanding of the Corporate Law and other business issues that relate to performing the duties of a company director.

Similar requirements also apply to those of your clients who are involved as committee members in not-for-profits, charities or sporting organisations.

There is a need for directors and committee members to be aware of the legislation; to understand best practice and to understand the ethics of running business entities, whether they’re companies, not-for-profits, charities or sporting organisations.

This is why we’re presenting this series which hopefully, will be able to be developed next year into a series that you (accountants), will be able to present to your clients if you wish.

In the first instance, directors are responsible for “setting the scene”, for deciding on the “corporate culture” and planning the strategies for a business.  They then need to appoint a chief executive officer or general manager to operate the business.  It’s then very important that the directors or committee members implement policies and processes whereby they can monitor what is happening within the business.

If there are any lessons so far, coming out of the Bank Royal Commission, it is that there is an expectation that directors of companies and committee members of not-for-profits, charities or sporting organisations, will implement processes whereby they’re able to continue to monitor the actual performance, not just accept without any independent review, what is being told to them.

This means that they need to develop an awareness of what is happening on all things legal, whether it’s the Companies Act, the Association Incorporations Act, Taxation, Workplace Health & Safety, Fair Work Australia, Environmental Laws, Privacy Act or overseas workers’ rules to work in Australia.

Directors also need to be developing some financial literacy.  They need to be able to read, understand and analyse the financial accounts that are presented to them if they’re going to be able to perform their duties.

There is also a need for the implementation of appropriate systems so they’re aware of key issues relating to:

  • People - resignations, accidents, serious injuries or even deaths, warning letters issued to team members, complaints that have been made to Fair Work Australia.
  • Workplace Health & Safety, monitoring any correspondence received from appropriate government agencies.
  • Monitoring Customers – the “life blood of a business’, frequency of sales, average sales, complaints and compliments.

In the market, what is happening with:

  • competitors?
  • suppliers?
  • new technology?

Does the company have an innovation policy?  Is research and development being appropriately recorded so that the Research & Development Rebate can be claimed?

Is the intellectual property, that’s being developed, appropriately protected?

These are the type of questions that directors should be asking so to perform their duties and responsibilities.

The Corporate Governance Network brings together a team of experienced advisers who will be communicating and supplying information to the Corporate Governance Network subscribers over the next twelve months from 29th May 2018 onwards.

The expertise that we’ve assembled is people with knowledge in:

  • Leadership
  • Marketing
  • Sales
  • Legal Issues
  • Debtors Collections
  • Budgets and Cashflow Forecasts
  • Workplace Health & Safety
  • People Issues

We believe this team will be able to encourage and inspire your clients, who are company directors or aspiring to be company directors, officers of companies or committee members or officers of not-for-profits, charities and sporting organisations, in understanding this very important role that companies and organisations have – being a director or a committee member.

I also believe it will be a great training programme/professional development programme, for your accounting team so your team members have a greater understanding of the roles and responsibilities of directors and committee members in organisations.

You can still register for the series which commences on Tuesday 29th May 2018.  Please go to our website – https://esssmallbusiness.com.au  Corporate Governance Network.

If you have any questions about how the system is going to work or questions from your clients, please don’t hesitate to contact us.  Send me an email – peter@essbiztools.com.au or phone me on 1800 232 088.

I look forward to some of your clients, and even some of your team joining us for this very important Corporate Governance Network.

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