Fraud Prevention Tip #35: Write About Your Fraud Risks and Better Practices for Managing These Risks
One of the easiest (and least expensive!) ways to teach your employees about how to manage their fraud risks is to write about it. Short ‘how to’ articles published in organization electronic portals, websites and newsletters are the perfect place to provide direction.
These articles should all address one common theme:
How do I know?
Here are a several questions to go a few levels deeper:
- How do I know what I’m about to sign is correct?
- What should I be asking myself before approving this document?
- What details should I check and how can I check them efficiently?
- How should I react if something doesn’t look or feel right?
Using these and similar questions as your shell or outline, draft and publish one article each calendar quarter for a year or two. That gives readers time to digest the advice and apply it in their daily habits before moving on to the next risk area.
Start by addressing fraud risks that are common or systemic throughout the organization. Examples might include good questions to ask before approving:
- Invoices from suppliers
- Out of pocket travel or other cost reimbursement
- Purchasing card transactions
- Time sheets
- Journal entries
- Work orders
- Wire transfer requests
- New customer applications
- Job candidate documents
- Monthly or other periodic Applications for Payment from contractors
- Other documents unique to the organization
Don’t get bogged down in long explanations of theory or governing regulations. Get to the point and provide use full direction. Use this test. If the employee or manager had a one-sided laminated checklist in front of them on their desks as they were reviewing this document, what would be on that checklist?
With their pen in their hand as they are about to approve the transaction, I doubt they would be seeking theory or regulations. They just want to know what to check before signing.
That’s the content of your article right there. No more, no less.
John J. Hall, CPA
John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events. Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”