In 2013, the Singapore Government implemented two important initiatives that aimed to position Singapore as a global accountancy hub and to significantly improve the corporate governance in its business landscape. The first of these initiatives was the Singapore Qualification Programme which ensured that the standards for the qualifying exams for the accountancy profession were raised to a level that attracts only the best minds to join the field. Secondly, it established the Singapore Accountancy Commission (Note that it has now merged with the Accounting Standards Council (ASC) to form the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA), whose chief objective is to inject professionalism into the field.
However, over time, it has been observed that these governmental efforts can only succeed if individual business owners employ professionals to oversee their accountancy processes with the high standards of accountability and accuracy that the field demands. But what are the benefits?
Optimal Financial Analysis and Management
In most cases, what normally leads to the collapse of a company is poor management when it comes to its finances. Cash flow is a very critical aspect of a business and when it is not properly managed, cases like customers being late on payments become a common occurrence and it could even lead to the business itself hurting its vital relationships with its committed suppliers. Without proper financial accountability, business owners are also tempted to make irregular withdrawals from the company’s accounts thus denying it adequate operational funds. However, this shouldn’t be the case when a business has a qualified accountant within its ranks. With proper analysis they can be able to detect loopholes in the company’s financial records and implement measures to counter them appropriately.
Tax Obligations and Assessments
A highly trained accountant is very crucial for the tracking of all the financial information of a company and documentation of this information in an easy to retrieve format. In the end, it is this information that they will use to prepare the company’s annual taxes at the right time and with great accuracy, something that will go a long way in preventing a business from running into problems with the Inland Revenue Authority of Singapore (IRAS). This proper preparation of accounting records will also be important for the business to benefit from sound tax advice after a thorough assessment is done.
Presentation of Proper Reports to Investors
Investors in Singapore today are very keen on the financial records of the businesses that they invest their money in. Therefore, it has also become crucial for the business owners to hire the best accountants to work for them. Doing so is usually a positive signal to the investors that the business is keen on maintaining proper books that will provide them with vital information on the health of the business should they need it. And by extension show them that the business owners have a strong corporate governance system to ensure the continuity and sustainability of the business, a factor that will eventually convince them to invest more funds in the business to support its growth strategies.
Helps The Business Planning Process
Every good business needs to do a review of its performance on a monthly or quarterly basis and a good record of accounts as prepared by a knowledgeable accountant are usually important to this key business planning process. The properly managed records help the business to access timely and accurate business advice from consultants after an analysis ensuring that the viability of its future projects is properly guided. Should they also intend to enter into partnerships as part of their growth strategies, these records will help them to prepare both detailed and winning proposals.
Deployment Of Technical Financial Systems
As technology takes center stage in most processes, the business world is quickly evolving in the way it records and digests this information for different operations. The high standards set for the accountancy training programmes in Singapore have seen to it that the accountants released into the field are well versed with the current trends that are unique to accounting practices. Therefore, by hiring these professionals or by outsourcing, you will not only benefit by having someone who is well versed with the latest technical aspects of accounting but also one who is familiar with the right technology to use to make accounting systems efficient. In the end, this will benefit your business by having accurate accounting reports that are also easy to digest and analyze.
Clearly, the benefits of having a qualified accountant who has been tested by the accountancy qualification programme and guided by the high standards set by the Singapore Accountancy Commission are many to a business that is keen on efficiency in its operations. In the end, it will not only lead to the business improving its corporate governance practices, accountability or accuracy in financial reporting but also impacts the Singapore economy positively as it experiences inevitable growth.