When this happens, actuaries can use the data that was collected to provide a clear picture of what is taking place inside the various segments of the firm. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
Obtaining a complete list of all business units is where the off the books activities and any type of outside partnerships are disclosed to managers. This helps them to determine the extent of these arrangements on the company and the impact of the actions of other entities. Once this takes place, is when actuaries will have a better understanding of what is occurring and how this is contributing to the corporation's growth. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
Performing a risk assessment is when executives will determine if there are any kinds of actions that pose a threat to the firm. This allows them to see if questionable areas are a possible danger and the lasting impacts it will have on the organization. It is at this point when they can investigate further and uncover something. That could be in violation of Sarbanes-Oxley. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
Identifying locations subject to testing / coverage is where the company has found specific areas that need further attention. This is important, in assisting managers to discuss how the activities of: partnerships, agreements or off the books entities could impact the quality of the information which is provided. If there are any kinds of issues, they can address them internally and ensure that all proper disclosures are being made under the law. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
Mapping the entire process is when a complete assessment is conducted of the activities impacting the firm and the lasting effects it could have on the organization. At the same time, this is providing executives with a total picture of what is occurring. This helps the company to analyze these shifts and decide if some kind of disclosures must be made. It is at this point when the company can more effectively understand what is happening and the lasting impacts it is having on the firm. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
These different steps are important, as they will help the company to improve its ability to remain in compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley and decrease the chances misstatements. This is when the accuracy of the financial information will improve. Moreover, this process will reduce the staff involved with investigating these issues, by having a process for consistently analyzing what is taking place. In many ways, one could argue that this is the key for ensuring proper compliance and actively monitoring the activities of these segments. ("Sarbanes-Oxley Act") (Holland)
Clearly, Sarbanes-Oxley is having an impact on the firm by changing disclosure requirements. This means that executives must understand what is happening inside the organization on every level. The biggest challenges have been that this process will often cost more money, involve added personnel and increased amounts of time. These are the primary reasons why many firms are going private or listing on stock exchanges overseas.
However, in the case of the corporation, it cannot afford these kinds of drastic moves. This is because the firm continually needs access to working capital and has tradition of providing added levels of transparency to shareholders. The best approach is to have the company utilize the different steps that were outlined. The long-term effects are that this will have include: reduced costs, improved compliance and understanding what is happening within each division. This will ensue that the company is actively monitoring these activities, can detect material disclosures and report them inside their financial statement. It is at this point, when the information can be used to provide more detailed analysis of what is taking place and the lasting impacts on the balance sheet.