Standard Audit File for SMEs: important changes
A reporting requirement in the form of Standard Audit File stirred up considerable confusion among Polish entrepreneurs. Developing the range specified by the Ministry of Finance and adopting it to the organization is a challenge for accounting and IT departments. Consulting firms may help, as they have the know-how and experience gained during implementations, and are able to interpret the requirements of the legislator. We have compiled an essence of Standard Audit File issues for you.
The small and medium-sized businesses obligation to generate reports in the SAF format is an additional problem to solve. The rigid SAF structure is difficult to implement in smaller companies. Applicable tax regulations leave a certain area of discretion in the way accounting records are kept. Therefore, most companies apply their own rules developed over the years of running the business. Adapting them to standardized SAF structure reports may require major changes in the daily work of accounting departments or even modifications to the existing IT infrastructure of the company. One example may be the requirement concerning presentation of the chart of accounts in the report. The SAF Book Accounting structure requires presentation of classification of accounts in a rigid division into groups. The regulations, however, define the standard chart of accounts, but allow for flexibility in terms of its use. The Ministry responded to the above comment and declared that work on the final structure was still in progress.
A similar case of confrontation of the SAF structure with real life business processes is a requirement for counterparty data presentation in the SAF FA structure, where company sales documents are to be presented. The obligation formulated by the Ministry is consistent with the provisions of the Tax on Goods and Services Act, and includes providing name and address of the purchaser. Business relationships between companies diversify the roles performed by contractors: in a transaction one entity can be a buyer of goods, another may be a payer and yet another the recipient of delivery. In response to our request to specify, the legislator could not clarify their expectations.
Implementation of the Apollogic SAF application includes the step of checking the system for compliance with SAF requirements. At this stage, analysis of accounting processes and their optimization is also possible. Recommendations are formulated for changes to the system, including both functional and technical modifications. It is also possible to adjust the application to specific processes in the company. This is especially useful for companies obliged to reconcile reporting financial performance to superior units with rules imposed by the Polish audit authorities.
- On 10/01/2017