Hiring talent, training and technology are major blockages to Asian business compliance in 2019
The region’s top corporates are still losing sleep finding the best ways to hire the right finance staff who can both grow the business and maintain regulatory compliance. Once they get them, sourcing supportive technology and delivering quality training are equally challenging, new research reveals.
According to the latest Asia-Pacific Researching Asia’s Compliance and Regulatory Readiness 2018 survey by CorporateTreasurer in partnership with the TMF Group, senior finance executives rated talent acquisition, training and technology as the top three requirements to ensure their organisation is shipshape.
Achieving internal growth was top priority for those polled, with cross-border organic expansion ranking second. Overall, 56% of respondents aim to expand in APAC in the next 12-18 months. APAC’s corporates are also keen to grow through mergers and acquisitions, ranking this as their third business priority, going forward.
According to the TMF Group, those planning to enter a new market need to understand and have effective strategies in place, including a market entry study, before undertaking this important move. Once a decision is made to enter a market, there is a tendency to rush through the process, with a corresponding danger of overlooking basic compliance matters.
Hiring the right people for the job means choosing between picking experienced foreign talent with relevant multi-country backgrounds or finding individuals locally. Each has benefits, although local hires have the advantage of good knowledge of local regulations and compliance needs.
COMPLIANCE AND REGULATION
In the TMF Group’s view, the biggest issue for most organisations is not having adequate resources to oversee legal, compliance and tax matters in APAC, so staying on top of regulatory changes presents challenges for in-house company secretaries and compliance officers.
This rings true. Those APAC firms surveyed named cyber security, tax compliance, basic erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) and transfer pricing as the top regulatory challenges they faced when doing business in the region, but accounting complexity and the future impact of technology was certainly top of mind for those polled.
While cyber security, BEPS and transfer pricing are more likely to impact larger organisations and multinationals, tax compliance and the ease of doing business in a particular jurisdiction can have a significant bearing on those wanting to enter or set up new entities.
To learn more about the results of this exclusive research, please download the report.