Tuesday night Hemming Robeson ran its third masterclass hosted by Withers LLP. 60 of Hemming Robeson’s Interim Executives gathered to discuss the difficult topic of Fraud. The event was chaired by Meriel Schindler who leads Employment at Withers and her colleagues Stephen Ross (Head of Civil Fraud) and Anne Davies (a Criminal Fraud and Bribery Act Expert). The masterclass focused on Jason Longing, an actor, playing the role of an Interim Financial Controller who suddenly finds himself in charge of the Finance Department having been with the organisation a short while. His boss, the FD, has very suddenly exited on sick leave having never perviously had a day off sick!
The role-play took the audience through the decisions (mostly in haste or through inexperience) Jason makes having had a potential fraud drawn to his attention by a recently fired executive. Anne and Steven then expertly unpicked the mistakes and opportunities missed to ensure that the organisation did all in its power to protect the assets involved in the fraud together with its reputation.
“The key it would seem is around the sequence of events followed post acknowledgement that fraud may be taking place. The need to engage lawyers first, before advisors such as auditors, to protect legal privilege and the importance of locking down all information prior to the creation of a working party to investigate were just a couple of highlights” said Nick Robeson, CEO at Hemming Robeson.
Leon Labovitch, an Interim Change expert spoke commented. ” It was a superb masterclass as one would expect from Hemming Robeson’s learned friends at Withers. Polished presentations, discussion and content and an audience of the highest calibre Interim Directors” adding to that, Tony Martin, an Interim Managing Director said “Really excellent, both from a content perspective but also a great chance to network afterwards”.