The person who opens the mail should stamp any checks received with an endorsement to deposit only to the company’s account. This person should not be the one making deposits or reconciling the bank accounts.
The person processing invoices from suppliers for payment should not have authority to place orders with the supplier.
You’ll also need to look at how you handle purchasing authority at your firm. Consider the following:
While it’s convenient to provide employees with credit cards for gas purchases and materials at the local box store, such cards are an opportunity for abuse. Have employees turn in all receipts for such purchases to your accounting department and have them match them to the bills from these companies.
Make sure you are clear with all employees that have such credit privileges what things are and are not approved purchases. For instance, is it okay to charge a new saw to the company? How about saw blades or nails? Likewise, is it okay to charge gas if the vehicle is being used for personal use? Clarify all of this up front and you will have fewer issues with abuse caused by confusion about what is/is not appropriate.
If the company provides cell phones for employees, make sure that you have a policy in place for what appropriate uses of phones are. Again, someone other than one of the users should be reviewing the phone bills to watch for excessive use and unauthorized calls.
Next, recognize that time is also money. If you are paying employees by the hour, particularly if they are working in the field without supervision, you will need to set up procedures to make sure that your company is getting eight hours of work for eight hours of pay.
You should establish a policy regarding personal use of the Internet and social media on company time as well.
Here are several other considerations worth noting:
Have all the company mail brought to you to look through before it is distributed to the individuals and departments within the company. This is a really good way to keep a pulse on your company and pick up on complaints or suspicious billing from suppliers.
Make sure that all employees take regular vacations and that someone takes over their work while they are gone
Monitor your company’s cash flow and financials; if something doesn’t seem to add up, investigate the situation immediately
Ultimately, the honesty and integrity of your employees is the most important element in protecting company assets. This makes that hiring decision all the more important.