What is internal control?
It is the system of checks and balances to ensure the company’s financial records are accurate and reliable being the result of transactions that are carried out and recorded timeously, accurately and efficiently.
The effectiveness of internal controls is dependent on management’s attitude towards controls.
Indications of a strong internal control environment
- Employees possess the necessary skills and competence required
- Recruitment agencies or HR checks and verify the details in CVs properly.
- Proper inhouse training to staff
- Clear roles and responsibilities
- Separation of duties are in place between functions of initiation, authorization, recording and reviewing.
- Monitoring of staff performance
Strong document controls include:
- Easy to understand designed forms
- Sequentially pre-numbered documents to be able to track, record and reconcile documents.
- Orders and Invoices approved by management
- Payments approved by management
- Physical verification and inspections are performed
- Supporting documents accompany orders and deliveries
- Information on documents comply with VAT requirements
- Documents are filed regularly and in a logical manner
Strong Accounting and Admin controls include:
- Reconciliations between accounting records and source documents – bank accounts, supplier statements, customer statements.
- Overall review done by management.
- Statutory requirements such as VAT returns, Payroll returns, Tax returns reviewed by management.
- Filing are done in a logical manner i.e. monthly file for expenses and income.
The objectives of an asset management policy are to ensure that assets are managed and accounted for by:
The goal of asset management is to achieve the required level of service in the most cost-effective manner, which is achieved through management of the asset’s life cycle.
Asset Management Policy’s purpose is to prescribe procedures for the financial and logistical management of assets, and to:
- provide a formal set of financial procedures that can be implemented to ensure that asset policies are achieved;
- ensure that effective controls are communicated to management and staff through clear and comprehensive written documentation;
- ensure that the safeguards and controls the assets;
- optimize asset usage; and
- emphasize a culture of accountability over assets.
The asset register shall be a complete and accurate database of the assets
and that is regularly updated and validated.
All assets owned and controlled by an entity must be recorded in an asset register.
The asset register should contain following information:
- a brief but meaningful description of each asset
- the date on which the asset was acquired or brought into use
- the location of the asset
- identification number or barcode
- the original cost or the fair value if no costs are available
- accumulated depreciation to date
- the depreciation charge for the current financial year
- the carrying value of the asset
- the method and rate of depreciation
- impairment losses incurred during the financial year
- the date on which the asset is disposed of
- the disposal details
- the date on which the asset is retired from use, if not disposed of.
Assets remain in the asset register for as long as they are in existence or until being written off.
Wessels & Associates is an Audit and accounting practice based in Pretoria, Montana area.
We specialize in the following:
- Fixed Asset Registers
- Quality control and testing of Fixed Asset Registers
- Asset Management Policies
- Assessing useful lives and impairment of assets
- Technical support on GRAP (General Recognized Accounting Practice)
- Training and workshops on GRAP related to assets
- Streamline your internal processes to be more efficient
- Help build your own capacity within your business.
- Audit Support