Financial Execs Concerned about Internal Controls

Nearly a third of financial reporting executives in a new poll said internal control over financial reporting was their highest concern beyond their financial reporting responsibilities.

KPMG surveyed nearly 400 financial executives during the firm’s 25th Annual Accounting & Financial Reporting Symposium and 31 percent cited internal controls as their biggest concern. Approximately 26 percent of the respondents said they were most worried about data infiltration and IT security, a sharp contrast from a similar survey that KPMG conducted at last year’s symposium, when those concerns ranked at the bottom of the list.

Another 20 percent of the financial executives polled said they worried most about tax compliance. Concerns about future regulatory mandates, which topped the 2014 list of compliance concerns expressed by executives at last year’s symposium, troubled 17 percent of respondents the most.

KPMG also asked the financial executives about their preparedness for new accounting standards. Less than 29 percent of the corporate financial preparers polled said their companies have a clear plan to implement the new revenue recognition standard, with less than 13 percent of the respondents saying they have completed an assessment of the effects of the new standard and are planning implementation. As many as 82 percent, however, say they are still assessing its effect (55 percent) or have taken no action (27 percent) while they await the completion of the standard setting.

On the subject of the new leasing standard that is due for release from the Financial Accounting Standards Board this quarter, less than 13 percent say they have a clear plan for implementation, and only 9 percent of the respondents said they would implement this standard in 2016 or 2017. As many as 67 percent of those polled said they expected implementation in 2018 (18 percent) or 2019 (49 percent).

“Both standards will require significant effort, and these results demonstrate the complexity of implementation across entire organizations,” said KPMG national managing partner of audit John Ebner in a statement.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.