Forcing employees to take holidays for a fortnight could help businesses detect fraud and save millions of pounds.
Investigators at Ernst & Young are advising companies that the summer holiday season is the peak time for detecting fraud, as employees tend to take a longer break during this time. Alarm bells are raised by suspicious bosses and co-workers who take on the work of cheating employees and notice things that are not quite right.
Ernst & Young says that enforcing two week holidays for company employees could reduce fraud by millions across the UK.
The firm says that the typical profile of an insider fraudster is a long serving, trusted employee, who works long hours and who is reluctant to take their annual leave.
Ernst & Young is issuing some advice for businesses to help detect and reduce fraud:
- Encourage a sustained holiday for staff.
- Properly investigate issues which may at first appear to be a mistake or where suspicions may seem trivial.
- Have clear policies about what constitutes unacceptable behaviour and what action will taken against fraudsters.
- Get your processes right. Businesses should appoint an officer to undertake a risk assessment. Record incidents where ethical standards may have been breached, log concerns, and build the learning points into future processes.
- Train employees to ensure they understand your policies. Give adequate support and ask employees to sign compliance statements.
- Demonstrate a message of zero tolerance. As a first step, discuss the issues at a board meeting and ensure the minutes reflect that you have added anti-fraud measures to your code of conduct.
Read more about insider fraud during the holidays on Ernst & Young’s website.
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