“A talk on the New CBN Cashless Policy” – Full Hedge Audit (2/2)
- What’s your view concerning the new CBN cashless policy and also FIRS plan to increase VAT?
Mrs. Rufai- These two questions are loaded, the cashless policy is good but within the environment we are in, it's not really advisable because the economy is currently in the doldrums. And we want the people who prefer keeping their money under their pillow to bring it to the bank and then charge them for depositing their money? Since the withdrawal policy has been implemented and it’s effective. And it has actually been able to curb a lot of frauds because you can’t transfer beyond a particular amount, so definitely the account the money is going to is known. But purchasing something and going away with it in an era of fake alerts, and other issues….that trust is not there yet. So I think it’s better they just limit it to withdrawal. Most people have a lot of cash but their profit -margin is so little and when that little profit is being taken by the bank, of course, they will start keeping money at home or shops. And when people are aware there is money at home, robbery cases might shoot up. So it’s better we maintain our withdrawal policy.
Mrs. Obels- Well, on VAT; the one that is currently running, people are not complying. Clients backlog on VAT returns and when it’s time to audit they now start paying. And now for the Government to now say they want to increase it again is not making the business environment very friendly. A lot of businesses will say governments want to collect all the money that they are making. Aside from VAT, there are other tax returns they have to pay, so we’re not too comfortable with that. They say its companies doing above 25 million nairas. Anyways, let's see how it goes.
In your words, you said cloud systems are cost-effective but some SMEs usually request one-off payments on BMAC software.
Mrs. Rufai– You mean they just want to pay once without any subsequent renewal? Where will they get that? It is not available anywhere. Even the stand-alone software that costs more than BMAC still requires an annual renewal fee. There is nowhere you get a “one-off” payment because the company has to improve, enhance the features of the software and give customer support. And besides, they say whatever did not cost you something is not valuable. And we professionals, we try to educate the clients as to the benefits. But maybe because we are not SMEs, we can't see it from their perspective. SMEs always want to cut costs (Everybody Laughs). And the fact that SMEs can collaborate and keep their records off location without necessarily employing an accountant makes BMAC flexible to work with. So cloud accounting software has been brought down to the level where so many people can access it.
3. Young accountants are now coming to the realization that a degree is not enough, they definitely have to enhance their qualifications and skills to gain grounds in the industry. What would be your advice for such accountants on cloud accounting?
Mrs. Rufai– You narrowed it down to accountants but I think one should talk about the youths in general because they are all the same in their thinking and perspective. The society is filled with a lot of getting rich quick schemes. Hard work is not been projected as good anymore, been famous through any means is what is been portrayed. So it has affected everybody including the crop of accountants being churned out because we also do recruitment and interviews and we see the quality. Nobody wants to make sacrifices, a lot of youth have misplaced priorities. For instance, you see a youth with an active two phones, still tasking people for money, you should know such person has a misplaced priority, living above his or her means. We advise that people should take time to climb the ladder of success through patience and hard work and they will reap good fruit. The accounting profession is now global, young accountants can take certifications that will enable them to work anywhere, such as cloud accounting. People are specializing more now than before which I believe is better.
3. Back to BMAC Customer Experience Week, what’s your take on BMAC, is it customer-friendly?
Mrs. Rufai- Well, I think BMAC is user-friendly. Customer-friendly…., they are stepping up their game and it can get better but the product itself is user-friendly. Having a customer service department is a step in the right direction.
BMAC Team– Thank you very much for your invite and the audience. We expect more referrals and if there’re any issues, we’re just a call or DM away. Thank you once again! We hope to meet you again soon.