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UP-TO-DATE: Keeping you informed of business today


Perfect your CV

With an unemployment rate of around 25% in South Africa – and possibly more, depending on how you calculate it – competition for every job opening is fierce. The first step towards securing your dream job is putting together a professional curriculum vitae. But many great candidates fail at this first hurdle in the job search process by making some basic errors when compiling their CVs.

•         Irrelevant or sharing too much personal information

•         Falsehoods and half-truths of qualifications and previous achievements

•         Spelling mistakes and typos can portray laziness and/or incompetency

•         Start your CV with a summarised career chronology

•         Be upfront about any gaps in your work history

Refrain from highlighting your salary expectations. If you’re too modest the employer may wonder if you’re qualified for the job, or you may weaken your chances of negotiating the best possible package. If they’re too high, your CV will be dismissed out of hand.

Source: Anja van Beek, HR Director for Sage VIP and Chief People Officer for Sage AAMEA


Fake credentials rise

Qualification fraud is fast becoming a significant problem, reaching epidemic status across the globe.

In South Africa it has been increasing by 200% over the past five years (2009– 2014) and it is affecting even the highest executive levels.

As these fraudsters enter the workplace, a number of honest and legitimately qualified individuals are sidelined for the respective positions.

High-risk qualifications in terms of short courses include those in banking, bookkeeping and project management, as well as Bachelor of Commerce, Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Science degrees.

In some cases – highlighting the serious extent of the sophistication and dishonesty –  fraudulent master’s and MBA qualifications have been identified.

Source: The Star Workplace, 1 July 2015


Book review

Master Your Finances

Businesses have mastered the fact that financial management is the lifeblood of the organisation. Individuals, however, have mostly not mastered that insight. They often do not have the knowledge or the tools to manage their finances. There are principles and laws governing wealth creation which need to be understood. On the other hand, human behaviour, whether natural or conditioned, influences individuals to interact with finances in a particular manner. Master Your Finances aims to achieve the following:

  • Provide awareness to the mechanics of finances; what you own, owe, earn, spend, contribute and invest
  • Provide awareness to human behaviour and how this impacts financial net worth and align these behaviours and choices with the desired financial outcome

Author: Caroline Marwisa CA(SA)


Red tape hurts SA exports

South Africa is among the top 50 most expensive economies when it comes to exporting, with high tariffs, lengthy handling times and high inland transport costs making it difficult to trade abroad.

This is among the findings of a new Doing Business study by the World Bank and Treasury which, for the first time, ranked South Africa’s nine largest cities and four largest ports against one another on the ease of doing business.

South Africa’s performance has lagged behind that of its emerging market peers, with exports growing at an average of only 2,8% from 2004 to 2013, while the figure for middle-income economies was 8,6% and China and India’s exports growing much faster.

World Bank research has found that every additional day in the shipping of a product reduces a country’s trade by more than 1%.

Source: Business Day, 15 June 2015


Female millennials critical to future growth

Female millennials are set to play an important part in the future growth of financial services globally, according to a report released by PwC. According to the report, ‘Female millennials in financial services: strategies for a new era of talent’, financial services firms that do not possess the attributes these discerning women (born between 1980 and 1995) seek from prospective employers, or offer a clear path of career progression, will struggle to tap into this pool of talent and retain it and risk losing out to competitors.

PwC’s survey of over 8 000 female millennials across 12 industries, of whom 596 are working in financial services (banking and capital markets, insurance and asset management), uncovered the perceptions, aspiration and characteristics of women in the sector to help businesses to define and refine strategies for recruitment, retention and career development.

The report underlines that the increased presence of women in financial services can improve the ability to build relationships and engender trust, giving firms an edge. Women can also bring new perspectives to strategy and leadership – research of over 90 000 companies in 35 countries shows a clear link between the level of female board representation and market performance. This is most marked where women have a strong presence across all levels of leadership.

Source: PwC media release, 9 June 2015



SAICA Accounting Practices Committee (APC) expresses its views on the proposed amendments to IAS 1

The APC recommended that the proposed amendments on the classification of liabilities should form part of the comprehensive review of IAS 1, Presentation of Financial Statements. The detailed comment letter on ED 351, Classification of Liabilities: Proposed Amendments to IAS 1 can be downloaded from the SAICA website.

IFRS for SMEs Illustrative Financial Statements for Close Corporations issued

SAICA has issued the revised SAICA Close Corporations Guide together with the IFRS for SMEs Illustrative Financial Statements for Close Corporations.

The IFRS for SMEs Illustrative Financial Statements for Close Corporations are included from page 84 of the guide. Access the guide from the SAICA website.

Findings from the IASB’s Post-implementation Review (PIR) of IFRS 3,  Business Combinations

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) has added two projects to its agenda to explore the key findings from its Post-implementation Review (PIR) of IFRS 3.

Download the report and feedback statement of the review of IFRS 3 from the IASB website.


IRBA issued the Revised Guide for RAs: Reportable Irregularities

The Revised Guide for Registered Auditors: Reportable Irregularities in terms of the Auditing Profession Act has been issued by the IRBA and is effective from 1 July 2015. This guide replaces the previous guide, Reportable Irregularities: A Guide for Registered Auditors, issued in June 2006 and can be downloaded from the IRBA website (www.irba.co.za).

IRBA adopts the IAASB’s new and revised Auditor Reporting Standards

The IRBA board has adopted for use by registered auditors the IAASB’s new and revised auditor reporting standards and related conforming amendments, which are effective for audits of financial statements for periods ending on or after 15 December 2016.

Early adoption of the new and revised auditor reporting standards is permitted,but piecemeal adoption of these standards is not permitted.

The South African Auditing Practice Statement (SAAPS) 3 (Revised November 2013), Illustrative Reports (SAAPS 3 (Revised)), is in the process of being updated as a result of the issue of the new and revised auditor reporting standards by the IAASB.

The new and revised auditor reporting standards may be downloaded from the IRBA website (www.irba.co.za).


Double tax agreement: South Africa and Mauritius

The new double tax agreement (DTA) between South Africa and Mauritius, which was signed in 2013, was ratified on 17 June 2015 and will be effective from 1 January 2016.  A major change relates to the ‘tie-breaker’ in respect of dual residence of juristic persons. Whilst the current tie-breaker refers to the ‘place of effective management’ as the determining factor, the revised DTA states that the two tax authorities must reach a ‘mutual agreement’ to determine which state has taxing rights by virtue of its tax residence.

In this regard, SARS signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Mauritius Revenue Authority on 22 May 2015. The MoU sets out the factors to be considered by the tax authorities in determining the residence status of a juristic person. It is important to note, per the MoU, that the new tie-breaker provisions are additional factors to be taken into account when determining residence status and place of effective management and place of incorporation are also considerations. Furthermore, the tie-breaker clause does not affect the principle established in South Africa’s domestic law that if the place of incorporation/establishment of a juristic person is outside South Africa and if its place of effective management is outside of South Africa then it is not a resident as defined.