Ensuring Public Sector and Non-Profit Compliance

Public sector and not-for-profit organizations continue to receive increased scrutiny of their spending. Ensuring positive public perception and ethical behaviour of staff are crucial to maintain financial contributions, with increased oversight highlighting the importance of both.

We had a client who had concerns about whether its employees were following the travel and entertainment expense guidelines and protocols developed by management and the board of directors. We prepared a detailed audit report analyzing such expenditures and identifying areas in which they were not in full compliance with the policies set out in the manual.

After having examined a sample of expenses, the specialized audit report not only identified areas where policies were not being followed, but also provided several recommendations for improved implementation of policies going forward, as well as required documentation for record keeping.

As a result of our findings, the client redesigned its expense report template to allow for more description detailing how incurred expenses had a clear business purpose directly related to the organization. We also identified the lack of a formal policy addressing individual meals while on business travel, resulting in the client implementing specific guidelines regarding meal expenses while out of town. Another area for which we recommended improvements was the documentation on cost comparison for expenses such as travel and parking in order to ensure the most economical alternative was selected, as required by the policy manual.

In this particular case, our report enabled the client to take corrective action and move forward with full confidence that employees’ actions conformed with the policies of the organization and would stand up to public scrutiny.

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