Red Flag Reporting – A Great Way to Protect Your Business From Fraud!

June 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

We are so excited about our firm’s affiliation with Red Flag Reporting!  With a typical organization losing 5% of its revenue to fraud each year, it was an easy choice for McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, P.C. to affiliate its business with Red Flag Reporting services. 

The most recent Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) reported an average loss, due to fraud, of $140,000 per victim, with more than 20% of victims losing at least $1,000,000. These findings have prompted our firm to provide education and training to our employees and clients on fraud prevention, detection, and proactive reporting.

ImageUnfortunately, we’ve seen a lot of vulnerability in clients who over-rely on audits and internal controls alone to protect themselves from fraud.  Businesses need to focus on protecting their bottom line everywhere possible – not only on spreadsheets, but within their own work environment.  Choosing to affiliate with Red Flag Reporting was an easy decision for us – as it is the most cost-effective anti-fraud solution and it’s created for organizations of all sizes.  It was the perfect fit into our portfolio because it was founded within our industry, by experts with high standards similar our own.  In addition, clients love it because it’s a targeted, user-friendly and cost-effective solution to occupational fraud and it also helps uncover other safety and HR issues that can be very costly. 

Red Flag Reporting was created to educate and empower employees with the tools to detect and report unethical behavior. Because tips and complaints are proven to be the number one method of fraud protection (2012 ACFE Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse), the anonymity that hotlines like Red Flag Reporting provides has been shown to make employees feel both protected and alleviated from burden.  By adding a new service to our portfolio, McGowen, Hurst, Clark & Smith, P.C. is now in a unique position to build value and protect our clients. 

Red Flag Reporting’s mission is to protect organizations and their people from damages caused by financial fraud and employee misconduct.  Developed by experienced fraud investigators and human resources consultants, Red Flag Reporting is a highly effective program to detect and stop costly problems such as embezzlement, false billing, misuse of appropriations and accounting irregularities. The program also addresses employee protection, raising red flags before a work condition leads to a litigious situation.  More information can be found at

Joni Tonnemacher, CPA, MAFF 

Taxes…Who Doesn’t Love Them?!?

June 17, 2014 § Leave a comment

Whether we like it or not, the political campaign season has started and ‘taxes’ are always part of the battle.  Television ads tell us that one candidate voted to cut taxes for the rich, while the other candidate EVEN VOTED TO INCREASE THE GAS TAX!  Most of us “seasoned” citizen-observers understand that it’s mostly just about politics and the rhetoric is predominately smoke.

Nobody, including the most liberal among us, wants to pay more tax to whatever governmental agency seeks to collect it.  In fact, political points are usually scored when the tax collectors are bashed and bloodied, and the incumbent is indicted by his opponent as part of the “tax-and-spend” crowd of cronies in D.C.

ImageTaxes have always been at the essence of politics because it gets to the heart (and wallet) of every citizen.  So undoubtedly there are a few philosophical gems out there that might bring a smile to your face:

 “The difference between death and taxes is death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.”–Will Rogers

“In 1790, the nation which had fought a revolution against taxation without representation discovered that some of its citizens weren’t much happier about taxation with representation.”–Lyndon B. Johnson

“The taxpayer: that’s someone who works for the federal government, but doesn’t have to take a civil service examination.”– Ronald Reagan

 “You must pay taxes. But there’s no law that says you gotta leave a tip.”–Morgan Stanley advertisement

“This is too difficult for a mathematician. It takes a philosopher. The hardest thing in the world to understand is the income tax.”–Albert Einstein

“What is the difference between a taxidermist and a tax collector? The taxidermist takes only your skin.” – Will Rogers

“I am proud to be paying taxes in the United States. The only thing is I could be just as proud for half of the money.”–Arthur Godfrey

So, willing or not, get ready for the mid-term elections, with all those TV and radio ads and the flyers in the mail, the signs in the yards, and those out-of-state guests who happen to drop by the Iowa State Fair.  You’ll hear a lot about taxes, those who waste them and those advocating that the other guy pay more so you can pay less.  It’s only until November 4th.  It’s not a long time until then…

“Isn’t it appropriate that the month of the tax begins with April Fool’s Day and ends with cries of “May Day”!? –Rob Knauerhase

Tom Pflanz, CPA, CFP® 

Giving Back – Leading By Example

June 2, 2014 § Leave a comment

Our MHC&S firm is fortunate to have one of our own, Dave Farnsworth, as a member of the Forty Under 40 Class of 2014.  We are proud of Dave Farnsworth and congratulate him on this special honor.

ImageWhen I attended the presentation in March of this year’s Forty Under 40 Class, it made me appreciate all of these young leaders in our Des Moines Community.  They are taking time as they progress in their professions to give back to our local community.  They have the quality of “giving more than they receive.”

These young leaders are making a difference.  They are leading by example showing how important it is to have the qualities of a great leader.  These leaders care about giving their time to charities, assisting in the growth of others and being willing to give time to build a better community.

We need to say “Thank You” to this group of young professional and all the prior and future young professionals willing to commit to leading by example.  A leader is not just one who has talents benefiting their own growth, a leader is one that cares about others and is willing to commit the time to this cause.

Congratulations and “Thank You” to the 2014 Class of Forty Under 40.

Bob McGowen, CPA 

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