The assumption is that the information can be relied upon and so can your company, along with anyone involved in the inputting, collecting, processing, analyzing, reviewing, and attesting to that information. When your company operates with financial integrity, you have processes and systems in place that ensure the financial data you share is credible.
Without such credibility, without the ability to trust the information and the people behind it, your company’s reputation and valuation can be severely impacted—and investors could become wary of your company. What erodes a company’s financial integrity of financial statements or integrity in financial reporting? Any shortcuts taken, systems that haven’t kept up with your company’s growth, lack of visibility into the company’ true financial performance, an unethical corporate culture and, ultimately, weak internal controls over financial reporting (ICFR).
With a firm financial foundation and solid internal controls, however, a company is set up to produce reliable financial reporting—an absolute requirement if you ever want to undertake an M&A deal or go public. Before such a major transaction, your company needs the ability and skills capacity to produce timely, reliable financial information that can stand up to the scrutiny of auditors, inquisitive investors and, if going public, securities regulators. You can fill in any of the skills gaps with financial integrity experts who will tailor their guidance and solutions to your company’s current situation and adapt as that situation evolves.