Imagine forensic accountants going through every one of your expense claims
That’s exactly what’s happening to Welcome To Yorkshire following the departure of Sir Gary Verity who was its Chief Executive. He left having reimbursed the tourism company £40,000 in expenses that had been mis claimed. This has lead to the need for forensic accountants and investigators to minutely scour every single expense claim since 2013.
How did this scandal take so long to surface?
As owners of small businesses that do everything to log every expense claim accurately we know our readers will be shocked to think that an organisation could be so lax. We are all asking, ‘why did this take so long to come to light? Where were the receipts and detailed expense claims?’
However much those who need to fill them in regularly perceive expense claims as a pain, they are essential to honest, legal, transparent and accurate bookkeeping. This means companies’ know their true outgoings and staff can claim back exactly what is owed, whether that’s transport costs, fuel, subsistence etc.
What kind of culture allows vast sums of public money to be so carelessly spent and recorded?
It appears that after a considerable time Welcome to Yorkshire finally launched an internal investigation and by March of this year Verity had resigned. This should not come as a surprise because a proportion of Welcome to Yorkshire’s funding is public money given by local councils. In fact, the tourism organisation was in receipt of almost £15 million. This begs the question ‘ what was the culture like that vast sums of public money should be so carelessly spent?’ Bearing in mind how austere local government finances have been none of it truly adds up.
As bookkeepers we actively promote transparency
We ensure our books and/or any inspections are as easy and stress free as they could possibly be. There really is no excuse for a slap dash approach to expense claims. The forensic accountants, BDO will have their work cut out sifting all the expense claims submitted by Verity and also all the rest of the board and the other senior management team members.
We recommend technology to make the recording of expenses super simple
One can’t help wondering just how the TOUR DE YORKSHIRE actually happened as it was important to seduce the Tour de France organisers to stage the start of the prestigious race for the first time in Yorkshire during 2014. Will we ever find out the full extent of this particular expenses scandal?
Unfortunately forensic accountants will not be the only investigators that will be poring over Welcome to Yorkshire’s modus operandi. Clarion, a law firm will also be looking into the whole way WTY was governed. Verity has also been accused of bullying. Certainly it will be very interesting to read the report on the affair that will be published now the main investigation is complete.
What this scandal demonstrates is that processes and procedures must be put in place for every company whatever its size.
We are proud to ensure that our clients know that we will always look after their books methodically. After all there’s more than money at stake. Consider the impact legally and reputational should your company every find itself involved in something akin to this particular expenses scandal.
Do contact us if you would like to see your company bookkeeping undertaken by professionals to save you time, hassle and stress. It may well transform your business.
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