On the 2016 Board and Audit Committee Agendas

On the 2016 Agendas

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The KPMG Board Leadership Center and Audit Committee Institute (AC) have just published "On the 2016 Board Agenda" and "On the 2016 Audit Committee Agenda," highlighting items that boards and audit committees should keep in mind as they consider and carry out their 2016 agenda.

The road ahead for companies in 2016 will be particularly challenging given the level of global volatility and uncertainty—e.g., the geopolitical environment, commodity prices, interest rates, currency fluctuations, slowing growth on emerging markets—as well as technology advances disrupting established industries and business models. In this environment, the spotlight on corporate directors will continue to intensify as investors and regulators scrutinize the board's involvement in strategy, risk, and compliance.

Drawing on insights from our interactions with directors and business leaders over the past year, "On the 2016 Board Agenda" highlights six items for boards to keep in mind as they consider and carry out their 2016 agendas.

  • Deepen the board's engagement in strategy and assess the continuing validity of assumptions at the core of the strategy.
  • Make talent development a strategic priority.
  • Reassess the company's vulnerability to business interruption and its crisis readiness. 
  • Refine and broaden boardroom discussions about cyber risk and security. 
  • Promote effective engagement with shareholders, including the activists.
  • Keep board composition front and center.

"On the 2016 Audit Committee Agenda" points to key challenges and critical areas of focus for audit committees in the year ahead:

  • Maintain (or regain) control of the committee's agenda.
  • Quality financial reporting starts with the CFO and finance organization; maintain a sharp focus on leadership and bench strength.
  • Monitor fair value estimates, impairments, and judgments of key assumptions underlying critical accounting estimates.
  • Assess the company's readiness for FASB's new revenue recognition standard and for new country-by-country tax reporting.
  • Reinforce audit quality and set clear expectations for the external auditor. 
  • Consider how the company's disclosures can better tell the company's story—and the audit committee's.

For more information, download the full reports below.

The information contained herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavor to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.

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