Spotlight on Higher Education

We hope that everyone is enjoying summer break and looking forward to a productive and fruitful 2016-17 school year! For the same amount of time that this year’s college seniors have been in school, policyIQ has been in the business of supporting organizations with more effective and efficient Policy Management. To that end, we recognize that these supports are critical:
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Unique Needs of Higher Ed

We are grateful for the partnerships that we have with institutions of higher education to support their unique needs in policy management. Similar to the healthcare organizations that we serve, educational organizations have internal/administrative policies and procedures, as well as policy documentation that is directed to the audience that they serve. In the case of schools, we are talking about their students and faculty.

Organizations with both internal and external audiences often oversee various methods or systems for disseminating information. Part of the challenge that they are continually working to meet is keeping track of all of their documentation, recalling what system it is managed from and where it is in the process of upkeep and compliance. While policyIQ can certainly be the home base for all documentation in organizations that have decentralized audiences, it could also be the hub for mapping documentation to its various outlets. By using the database behind policyIQ to track precisely where documentation is to be found, to whom it must be made available, and which processes are related to it, organizations can ensure that the latest iterations are properly communicated to all pertinent audiences.

Remember, policyIQ is also a great place to capture compliance documentation!

Is your staff properly trained and certified on key procedures? Do you have a means for monitoring and verifying, in real time, who has signed-off on corporate policies? Does your organization have a central point of reference for standards and regulatory requirements? Can you map your organization’s policies and procedures to said requirements and provide evidence of coverage?

“YES!”

This can be your resounding answer to all of these questions with policyIQ.

Today, “Governance, Risk and Compliance” is relevant for organizations of all shapes and sizes—public and not-for-profit. Powerful and affordable, policyIQ can help your organization to be more effective and efficient, too! Contact us at support@policyIQ.com to begin or expand your implementation today.

Upcoming CPE Training from RGP

Thursday, June 30th: RGP Training Event (1 CPE Credit available)

In our quarterly financial reporting update, RGP’s subject matter expert, Shauna Watson provides a financial reporting and accounting review and analysis of the latest and upcoming FASB pronouncements, including lease accounting, financial instruments, and revenue recognition. By attending this session, you will learn what you need to know to comply with these changes and help your company to stay a step ahead.

1 CPE is available for your participation. This is a Group – Internet based basic level course and no prerequisites or advanced preparation is required.

To be eligible, please stay on for the duration of the webcast, participate in the polling questions launched during the session and complete the CPE survey.

Click here to sign up for the event on Thursday, June 30th!

A New RGP Training Opportunity

Join RGP’s Shauna Watson on March 24 at 12:00 Eastern Time for a new training session on Revenue Recognition.  The FASB and IASB have released a new Revenue Recognition standard which sets out a more consistent method for how companies book revenue, becoming effective for public companies in 2018. This converged standard will impact most companies, public and private, and its implementation will have effects beyond the Finance & Accounting organization.

Centralized contract management and the ability to maintain visibility and systems integration across performance obligations and over the contract lifecycle will become a key enabler to implementation and ongoing compliance for this new financial accounting standard. The intent of this webinar is to prepare companies that have limited or highly manual contract management capabilities and/or companies that seek to better support their organization’s finance and accounting function to meet the technical accounting requirements of this new standard.

The webinar is essentially geared towards sales & marketing, information technology, procurement, and legal stakeholders/professionals and will focus on the process, systems, people and governance elements needed to develop an effective Contract Lifecycle Management capability based on RGP’s differentiated framework.

1 CPE is available for your participation. This is course requires no prerequisites or advanced preparation.  We’re looking forward to having you join us!

Upcoming Training Opportunities from RGP

Here’s hoping that everyone has dug out from the winter storm that rocked the east coast over the weekend!  Assuming you’ve made it back to your desks, we’d like to offer you some free training sessions from RGP.

January 26: Using Spend Analytics to Drive Savings and Improve the Bottom Line

Join RGP as we take you through the key elements of spend analytics, and discuss how to establish a baseline from which to launch effective spend management. We will also highlight RGP’s advanced Spend Analytics solution which combines our expertise, a structured approach and leading-edge Business Intelligence that enables organizations to achieve deeper insights into value and risk mitigation opportunities.

January 28: Financial Reporting Update and an Outlook for the Year Ahead

As financial reporting implementation deadlines approach and projects continue to evolve, 2016 will be a big year for most companies – Revenue Recognition, Financial Instruments and Leasing guidance is all developing rapidly. How will the latest developments in standard setting affect your organization? What lies ahead for the upcoming year?  RGP’s Shauna Watson leads this session that will provide you with what you need to stay a step ahead.

February 18: An Overview of Cloud-based versus Traditional Systems

Join RGP experts Balaji Bondalapati and Paul Rundzieher for a discussion of cloud vs traditional ERP systems where they will provide an overview of each type of system, review major ERP vendors and their cloud product offering as well as discuss the major differences in terms of practical implementation and functionality.

New FASB guidance impacts most US companies

Today, the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) issued its final accounting standards update (ASU) regarding the classification and measurement of financial instruments. Although this project was initially a joint project with the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), the FASB abandoned a converged approach1 and decided to mostly retain existing U.S. GAAP requirements. Significant changes in the new standard include requiring:

  1. Investments in equity securities (with some exceptions) to be measured at fair value with changes recognized in earnings,
  2. Recognition of changes in fair value of an entity’s own financial liabilities measured at fair value separately within other comprehensive income rather than net income, and
  3. Changes to disclosure requirements.

Effective Date

 The ASU is effective for public companies for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2017, including interim periods within those fiscal years. For private companies, the standard is effective for fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2018, and for interim periods within fiscal years beginning after December 15, 2019.

Companies will be allowed to adopt the guidance on the presentation of their own credit risk upon issuance of the ASU in financial statements of annual or interim reporting periods that have not yet been issued or, private companies, not yet been made available for issuance.

Existing GAAP Retained

Although the FASB initially proposed holistic changes to classification and measurement of all financial instruments, they finally decided to retain current U.S. GAAP related to:

  1. Classification and measurement categories for financial instruments other than equity investments,
  2. The method for classifying financial instruments,
  3. Bifurcation of embedded derivatives in hybrid financial assets, and
  4. Accounting for equity method investments (including impairment of such investments).

Equity Instruments

All equity investments in unconsolidated entities that are not accounted for using the equity method of accounting or are variable interest entities (VIE) will generally be measured at fair value through earnings (e.g. current U.S. GAAP trading classification). There will no longer be an available-for-sale classification for equity securities with readily determinable fair values.

For equity securities that do not have a readily determinable fair value, a practicability exception is allowed for companies to record investments at cost, less impairment, and subsequently adjust for observable price changes. This practicability exception is not available to broker dealers within the scope of Accounting Standard Codification (ASC) 940 or investments companies within the scope of ASC 946.

The following flowchart further illustrates the new requirements for equity securities:

ASC_chart1.png

Loans and Debt Securities

 In a dramatic departure from the original exposure draft which suggested all financial instruments (loans and debt securities) should be measured at fair value through earnings, the final ASU retained current U.S. GAAP for these types of assets.

Financial Liabilities and the Fair Value Option

If the fair value option is elected for a financial liability, current U.S. GAAP requires that any periodic change in fair value be recognized in earnings. Under the ASU, changes in fair value that result from a change in the entity’s own credit risk will be recognized separately in other comprehensive income. The accumulated gains and losses due to changes in the entity’s own credit will be recycled from accumulated other comprehensive income to earnings when the financial liability is settled before maturity.

The FASB allows, but does not require, preparers to measure the change in the entity’s own credit risk as being the portion of the periodic change in fair value that is not due to changes in a base market rate such as a risk-free interest rate. A reporting entity will be able to use an alternative method if it believes it to be a more faithful measurement of the change in credit risk for the entity.

Disclosures

The following chart illustrates the ASU’s new disclosure requirements:

ASC_chart2

What Should You Do Now?

 Eliminating the ability to record marketable equity securities at fair value through other comprehensive income will increase earnings volatility for many companies. Accordingly, a plan to communicate the anticipated impact to further earnings should be developed and tailored specifically for investors, analysts, shareholders and other interested parties. If you have questions about how this may impact your company, please contact us.

The ASU can be downloaded from the FASB website by clicking here

Revenue Recognition – Are you ready? RGP and policyIQ can help.

RGPnewlogoSmall.pngIf you are in the finance or accounting departments – or if you are a regular reader of our blog – you already know that the IASB and the FASB issued updated standards with regards to revenue recognition in May of last year.  These new revenue recognition standards impact virtually every company across the globe – and while standards are not effective until 2018, companies must start preparing now.

Are you ready?

SWquoteRGP has invested a great deal of time and intellectual capital to prepare our clients for the new “rev rec” standards.  Our industry experts have created assessment and implementation tools that they are using in companies across the world to help prepare for compliance with the new standards.  The impact can be significant and involves people, processes and technology!  Check out our RGP website for an overview of the revenue recognition services offered, and let us connect you with an expert in your area.

policyIQ can help to organize your data!

One of the key aspects of preparation of the new revenue recognition standards requires an evaluation of all existing contracts.  For many companies, simply locating all contracts and pulling the data into a central place can require a huge investment of resources.

Companies have been using policyIQ as a centralized database to capture contracts for many years, and coupled with new rev rec contract evaluation tools developed by RGP, policyIQ can be a powerful tool for revenue recognition preparedness!

Reach out and let us talk about the services that RGP can offer and the value that policyIQ can add!

New Training Opportunities from RGP

Our technology experts may be particularly interested in these two upcoming RGP training sessions, as each deals with different aspects of technology in the GRC space.  Take a look!

November 17: Technology-based Innovation in the Digital Economy

The hills throughout Pittsburgh are filled with all kinds of beautiful Autumn color.  Fall nearly always means significant change to the weather and scenery of Western Pennsylvania, and this year is no exception.

Technology changes even faster–we can’t fight or resist the next big innovation may happen.  So, as companies, we need to be prepared to adapt these changing market conditions on a constant basis.  RGP Consultant Dr. Irvin Wladawsky-Berger will help us take a look at some of the technological hurdles we all experience, and how to best deal with these.  1 CPE credit is available for attending this event.

Click to sign up and emerge from the technology cloud more competitive and flexible than you ever imagined.

December 3: Cloud Computing and Business Performance Management

Speaking of clouds (technological, not those that bring rain), RGP experts have arranged an event to help bring some answers to cautious cloud-computing users.  Some find the idea of cloud-computing both stressful and confusing.  Does a cloud based environment really mean less security?  What are the benefits?  Attend this event, and get 1 CPE credit for participating.

Learn more about cloud computing and how it may be applied to your organization.

Check out the new RGP website!

RGPRGP is excited to announce its brand-new website at RGP.com.  Among the updates to our site are exciting profiles of our team of accomplished Practice Leaders and highlights of their subject-matter expertise.  These leaders are among the best in the world, and drive business initiatives that help lead our clients toward their goals.

RGP’s Services tab has been organized into easy-to-find Expertise and Initiatives areas, complete with details for each individual practice area:  Practice Leaders, Insights, Case Studies, Initiatives and so much more.

We hope you will have an opportunity to browse our new site. Please do not hesitate to let us know how RGP can help support you on your company’s critical initiatives. Thanks!

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