One of the most important employees in a business is the accountant. They can perform a wide variety of value-adding activities. With the advent of modernization and globalization, more things are expected from accountants when performing accounting services Singapore. But are we overrating or are we underrating the roles of accountants? Here we discuss what we should be expecting from these professionals in general.
Roles of Professional Accountants in Business.
Professional accountants are employed to answer businesses’ challenging questions. This is particularly special in small and medium enterprises where usually the accountants are the only professionally qualified members or staff. Those belonging to the operations group are hired to do bookkeeping services duties. However, accountants in the top level of management promulgate corporate strategies for use in governing the organization. As Chartered Financial Officer, they are tasked to monitor the overall financial health of the business.
Accountants can also be internal auditors. As such, they are involved in risk management, governance and internal control procedures. They can also be proactive in fraud investigations. Employing such procedures does not mean there’s a fraud that happened. Investigations cover activities which are by nature pre-emption, detection and evaluation.
External auditors on the other hand are concerned with providing an unbiased opinion as to the fairness of presentation of the financial statements of an entity. They should be independent from the company they are auditing. Given this, accounting firm, aside from offering the usual accounting services in Singapore, are usually tapped to provide external auditing to clients.
Protectors of Public Interest.
Because accountants are entrusted with a lot of confidential information, they are always expected to act with integrity. Nevertheless, if they are summoned by proper court to divulge some information, they should do so. This is due to the fact that they should always protect public interest.
Oftentimes, external auditors are seen to perform this duty. This is because they are the ones who usually detect fraudulent activities through their independent examinations. Nevertheless, the role of other types of accountants should never be discounted. All accountants are expected to be promoters of interest of the community as a whole.
Often accountants are faced by the dilemma of conflicting interests of the public and their own self. They should always exercise professional judgement though. They should favour a particular party on the basis of the Code of Ethics of their profession. They always expected to act with integrity, objectivity, professional competence, due care, confidentiality and professional behaviour.