PracticeConsultingLeader – 15 April

Leader - 15 April

A law to whet your whistle

When business people demand that accountants should be more corporate they sometimes mean that they should be less principled. Being told you are now part of the team is often code for telling you to swallow your scruples and turn a blind eye. At its best, corporate responsibility means that you have to stand by the management team’s decisions, whether you like them or not.

Of course, no-one would argue that accountants are not key corporate players. But the business world needs to remember that accountability is the core of good accountancy. And, in most cases, that means the accountants are the awkward squad. Who else will tell the chief executive that the figures from sales are bogus? Who, but the accountant, can tell the client that, financially speaking, the wheels are coming off her business plan?

Which is why the profession should welcome the announcement of a wide-ranging new law to protect whistleblowers. Instead of seeing them as dangerous mavericks, companies need to value whistleblowers as part of their system of business assurance. If staff are given a safe route to raise concerns, whistleblowing can benefit everyone. Of course, this will increase the pressure on financial managers to stick to the rules and on auditors to make sure they have spotted wrongdoing. But that is a price worth paying for a powerful new tool in the fight against fraud and irregularity.

Related Articles

5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

Accounting Software 5 tips for SMEs to protect cash flow

5m Alia Shoaib, Reporter
Tyrie on Finance Bill 2017: ‘Making Tax Policy Better’

Consulting Tyrie on Finance Bill 2017: ‘Making Tax Policy Better’

11m Stephanie Wix, Writer
Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Richard Toone, CVR Global

Accounting Firms Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Richard Toone, CVR Global

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Deloitte 'self-imposes exile' on government contracts to defuse PM row

Accounting Firms Deloitte 'self-imposes exile' on government contracts to defuse PM row

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Julie Adams, Menzies

Accounting Firms Managing partner Q&A - the year ahead: Julie Adams, Menzies

12m Kevin Reed, Writer
Friday Afternoon Live: Deloitte's tech thing; PAC wants HMRC 'contingencies'; and Sports Direct

Business Regulation Friday Afternoon Live: Deloitte's tech thing; PAC wants HMRC 'contingencies'; and Sports Direct

1y Kevin Reed, Writer
Friday Afternoon Live: HMRC complaints rise; Deloitte scoops big audits; and corporate reporting woes

Audit Friday Afternoon Live: HMRC complaints rise; Deloitte scoops big audits; and corporate reporting woes

1y Kevin Reed, Writer
New head of equity capital markets for KPMG

Accounting Firms New head of equity capital markets for KPMG

1y Stephanie Wix, Writer