Prevent Employee Fraud in Small Biz

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Employee fraud and theft is certainly a big concern for small businesses. Most owners don’t realize the impact fraud could bring on their business and don’t believe it until they face the curse themselves. Small companies have every reason to worry about fraudulent activities in their company. It can hamper and disrupt their working capital and, most importantly, their cash flow. Undoubtedly, small businesses are more vulnerable to employee fraud, theft, stealing, burglary, robbery, embezzlement – whatever you name it – because of ill-defined practices and processes and lack of business control. It indicates that a lack of accounting knowledge and wisdom, coupled with a lack of business management skills, may land you in real trouble.Cubicle to Cloud virtual business

Employee Theft and Fraud Can Lead to Lethal Repercussions—Are You Protected?

There is certainly no denying the fact that employee fraud can devastate your business. A slight miscalculation in finances or wrongful business projections can devastatingly hurt your business. According to studies, US-based companies suffer a staggering $150 billion loss in fraudulent employee activities yearly, of which 83% of theft happens in small businesses.

Another trend identified by the ACFE (Association of Certified Fraud Examiners) is that small businesses with fewer than 100 employees are more vulnerable to employee fraud, which can even kick the company out of the competitive race. Why? Because of two core reasons: a higher degree of misplaced trust and a lack of basic accounting controls. If small business owners expect to stay competitive, they must develop practical and implementable loss prevention strategies to get their business in full swing. Those who steal from you are often suspected of being the least in the company because of their well-established trust and faith.

What Should You Watch For?

In today’s era, catching culprits can be easy. Now, we have superior technology and practices that can help us prevent organizational losses and discourage fraudulent activities such as employee fraud. Blind trust can lead you to complete failure or utter disaster. You need to track and monitor daily business operations and activities, especially the influx or outflow of cash yourself, to keep things going in the right direction. The fear of losing cash and assets can cause anxiety and mental stress, which can be troubling for your health and business.ADP. Payroll – HR – Benefits

Any significant behavioral changes in employee attitude, working abilities, or spending habits can be warning signs of chances of some kind of employee fraud. Sometimes, financial stress and pressure at home can also lead an employee to commit theft or fraud. Moreover, your employees living beyond their financial means can also raise suspicion, which needs investigation. Pure blind trust is a story of the past. No matter how much confidence you have in your employees, you must ensure they are not stealing from you or committing fraud.

Ways to Protect Your Organization from Employee Fraud

Creating a written fraud or theft policy can help prevent employee fraud. This way, employees will know what fraud means to the company and the repercussions if someone from the company is involved in fraudulent behavior or activity. To set a precedent, you must establish a code of conduct with a zero-tolerance policy to discourage such illegal activities.

Having bookkeeping and accounting control would be best to make better business assumptions and decisions. If you have hired internal and external tasks of the business, you need to regularly conduct an audit to know your business’s actual financial conditions.LastPass – Family or Org Password Vault

Final Words

In summary, the threat of employee fraud and theft poses a significant risk to small businesses, often underestimated by owners until they directly encounter its consequences. The potential impact on working capital and cash flow is substantial, making it imperative for small businesses to address vulnerabilities. Lacking defined practices, business controls, and insufficient accounting knowledge exposes businesses to real trouble.

A strategic approach is essential to recognizing small businesses’ heightened susceptibility to employee fraud. Building trust with employees should not equate to blind faith; owners must proactively monitor operations and watch for warning signs, such as behavioral changes or financial stress among employees. Leveraging advanced technology and implementing loss prevention strategies are crucial for staying competitive. Establishing a clear fraud policy and a code of conduct and maintaining solid bookkeeping and accounting controls are vital steps toward safeguarding the organization from the detrimental effects of employee fraud. In today’s era, vigilance and proactive measures are essential to ensuring small businesses’ long-term health and success.

Complete Controller. America’s Bookkeeping ExpertsAbout Complete Controller® – America’s Bookkeeping Experts Complete Controller is the Nation’s Leader in virtual bookkeeping, providing service to businesses and households alike. Utilizing Complete Controller’s technology, clients gain access to a cloud platform where their QuickBooks™️ file, critical financial documents, and back-office tools are hosted in an efficient SSO environment. Complete Controller’s team of certified US-based accounting professionals provide bookkeeping, record storage, performance reporting, and controller services including training, cash-flow management, budgeting and forecasting, process and controls advisement, and bill-pay. With flat-rate service plans, Complete Controller is the most cost-effective expert accounting solution for business, family-office, trusts, and households of any size or complexity.CorpNet. Start A New Business Now