Cloud

SAP Launched new Cloud version of their software with integrated analytics
Companies can now avail of new SAP technology as the software giant moves into the modern world of cloud computing. The new version will now allow their business customer perform the same accounting, financial, and manufacturing management tasks as before, but in a more modern and efficient manner. This is great news for SAP experts and financial auditors who use the software.
Customers will now avail of public-cloud deployment opposed to building and maintaining their own data centres. With extra features added they now deem the software to be “smart”. It is claimed that it will do everything from managing manufacturing processes, to tracking inventory, to paying bills, to logging payments.
This will be invaluable to large multinationals delivering complex on-prem ERP solutions for the largest organizations on the planet. Essentially it will allow these companies to handle all the “technical heavy lifting” by using public cloud products instead of their own private data centers. In addition it also offers integrated analytics package to take advantage of the increased intelligence.
The overall idea is to provide more automated insight into the company data being collected by the ERP system. The system acts as a more active contributor to assist and augment the human decision makers.
Going forward more and more companies during the hiring process are making SAP knowledge a prerequisite for their audit and accounting openings so this may very well be the next step in our technology driven world.

One of the biggest issues every successful company face in today’s business world is the prevention of fraudulent activities committed by employees. Over a decade ago the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) Compliance was introduced which requires that all publicly held companies must establish internal controls and procedures for financial reporting to reduce the possibility of corporate fraud. However with increasing new technologies is this enough to protect companies in 2017?

In a recent study conducted by one of the Big4- on average global companies lost over 5% of revenue to fraudulent actions- the majority of this done by current employees. The reason for this was due to lack of internal controls and no risk management in place. Furthermore the cost to strengthen such internal controls is a considerable investment whether it be in hiring new staff such as internal auditors or specialist fraud and forensic audit professionals. However the cost of such professionals is far less than the loss of earnings suffered by companies due to fraudulent activities conducted by employees.

Companies must also face the costly burden of implementing new software such as Governance Risk and Compliance packages. Combine this with the cost of hiring new talent in the IT Audit arena to process, analyse test and review these controls.

Using new technologies such as the cloud has allowed companies to analyse risk management procedures which look for unusual patterns such as access frequencies, duplicate payments, and splitting invoices
These cloud tools automate controls that uncover these types of preventable risks, but they can also help companies develop a road-map for identifying strategic risks.
It is vital that organisations continue to develop their internal controls, invest in technology and most importantly specialized fraud and forensic audit professionals to mitigate the increasing number of preventable risks which untimely leads to higher profit margins.