of the Month: FierceSarbox
Susan B. Anders
NOVEMBER 2007 - FierceSarbox
is a member of the FierceMarkets family of websites. FierceSarbox
is a free site focusing on Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) compliance issues,
paid for by SOX-specific advertisements that may be as useful
to certain users as some of the site’s free resources.
home and main pages are organized in a consistent, easy-to-navigate
format. Tabs at the top of the home and main pages offer connections
to FierceFinance, FierceCIO, and the FierceMarkets index of related
sites. Linked pages open in the original window, and the other
sites follow a similar layout.
at the top of the home and main pages point to home, news, events,
whitepapers, webinars, and TechFinder. The menu bar also offers
links to log in, register, advertise, and contact the webmaster.
The home and news pages are exclusive to FierceSarbox, while the
other features are housed under FierceFinance.
The top and
center of the homepage are dedicated to the latest news, providing
an introduction, link to the full article, and keyword tags to
related articles. The left side of the homepage offers connections
to FierceFinance, press releases, comments posted by users, top
tags by topic, and a SOX glossary. The right side of the home
and main pages features links to external blogs, whitepapers,
events, and FierceMarkets
A large portion
of the website is devoted to current news articles about SOX compliance
issues, pulled from a variety of sources. The articles include
a toolbar to e-mail, print, leave a comment, and contact the author.
Most of the
articles offer keyword tags, links to the original source website
or blog, and related articles on FierceSarbox. The home and main
pages list the top tags, which are subsidiary indices of articles
on a particular topic. The articles are listed chronologically,
with the most recent articles at the top. The top tags include
regulatory news, PCAOB, small companies, NYSE, accounting, and
firms topic may be of interest to CPA Journal readers.
A recently featured article, “Career Watch: Accounting Firms
the Place to Be?,” noted SOX is driving demand for both
accounting and technology professionals, which may be why the
Big Four were all ranked within the top 11 best places to launch
a career, according to a BusinessWeek report. Other recent
linked articles were: “Audit Firms ‘Forget’
to Register,” originally in the New York Times,
and “More on Small Accounting Companies and Sarbox,”
a WebCPA.com survey.
The top news
story at the time of this review was “COSO Issues Guidance
Document for Comment,” addressing internal control objectives
over financial reporting, operations, and compliance. The FierceSarbox
article links to an internal copy of the release, which includes
contact information, related articles on the demise of the PCAOB’s
rules-based Auditing Standard 2 (AS2), and the release of the
new principles-based AS5. Users can sign up for a free weekly
newsletter that covers SOX news, corporate governance, compliance,
PCAOB, IT, governance, and section 404.
webinars, and “TechFinder” are integrated with the
FierceFinance website. The TechFinder page is organized as a topical
index with the main headings of business solutions, web and application
development, infrastructure and systems management, and industry-specific
solutions. Business solutions lists more than 450 providers of
accounting and finance software, and other subheadings include
business intelligence, customer service, and general office automation.
B. Anders, PhD, CPA, is a professor of accounting at St.
Bonaventure University, St. Bonaventure, N.Y.