How Do You Successfully Guard a Small Business Against Fraud?

At some point in the life of a successful small business, it becomes necessary to hire more people. This is both an exciting time as well as a scary one. It’s exciting because it means you are finally starting to realize your dream of owning a vibrant, growing business. It’s stressful because it also means you now have to trust your dreams to other people -- people who may or may not be trustworthy. So, what can you do to make sure that your new hires don’t rip you off -- other than the obvious things like doing background checks and get references? Here are tips from real Des Moines accountants on how to protect your small business against fraud.   Separate Business and Personal Up until now, you’ve probably not worried too much about what assets were for your business, and which were for your personal life. It all goes to the same place, right? Now, it’s time for that to change. Make sure you begin to compartmentalize and distinguish what computers, credit cards, and other assets are for your business, and which are personal. Should you hire an unscrupulous character, this will at least help protect your personal finances.   Have a System of Checks and Balances One of the easiest ways to open your business to fraud is to have a system where only one person is in charge of your accounts. The person who does not have anyone checking up on them is more likely to commit a crime -- that’s just common sense. Avoid this by having more than one person working your books and double-checking your finances.   Institute Policies We can’t tell you what policies will work best for your business, but we can tell you that it’s necessary to create a list of procedures that dictate who is in charge of what in your business, and what rights and privileges each employee does -- and does NOT -- have. These procedural fences you put in place will, ironically, create more freedom in the company, as people will have a much better idea of what is expected of them, and what lines cannot be crossed.   Hire Professionals One of the best ways to safeguard against fraud is to hire professionals to take over your books. Professional Des Moines CPAs, like the ones you’ll find at CustomOne CFO & Controllers, can handle your business finances while maintaining a reputation of trust that has been built up over years. If you’re looking for someone to handle your books, please don’t hesitate to contact us.