Local Office Blogs

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April 16, 2013

CBIZ Memphis will be hosting a CFO/Controller Conference Series May 14, 2013, at the Fogelman Executive Center on the University of Memphis campus. The event will be a half-day seminar focused on providing CFOs and controllers with direction on addressing current challenges within their respective organizations including the Affordable Care Act, data security standards in the payment card industry and the current lending environment.

Registration will begin with a breakfast at 8:30 a.m. and the event kicks off at 9:00 a.m. Listen to the following speakers and their presentations to receive a total of four CPE credits (Lunch will be served during the last topic). You can REGISTER HERE.

Topics include:

Business Lending: Navigating Today's Regulatory and Economic Challenges,Edward J. Gentry, Executive Vice President & Chief Lending Officer - Triumph Bank

Data Breach - Are you Ready?,Karen Cassella, Executive Vice President - CBIZ Security & Advisory Services, LLC

Would You Enthusiastically Rehire Your Team? How to Create 'A' Players Throughout Your Organization, Michael Synk, Strategic Coach - In-Synk

Affordable Care Act Update, Kim Agah, Vice President -CBIZ Benefits & Insurance Services, Atlanta

Can't attend the event? Follow along with the conversation on Twitter using #CFOController.

Registration: 8:30 a.m.

Event runs 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

4 CPE Credits

$50, Breakfast & Lunch Included

Will you be attending our CFO/Controller Conference Series? Have a question or topic you would like covered by one of the experts? Leave your comment below and we'll make sure to pass it along.

April 11, 2013

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that approximately 30 million people will purchase their own coverage through the new insurance exchanges by 2019, and there will be roughly 15 million more enrollees in Medicaid and CHIP than is projected under current law.

The Tennessee Government's website notes, "The federal health reform requires every state to have an Insurance Exchange.... an organized marketplace where individuals [and small businesses] can search for and purchase health insurance for themselves and their family members. While the law requires each state to have an Insurance Exchange, states have the option of either running their own Exchange, or handing that authority over to the federal government."

When the American Health Benefit Exchanges for individuals and Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) exchanges are fully in place, they will provide access to health insurance for 24-30 million Americans. The exchanges will be primarily markets where individuals and employees of small businesses will be able to ‘shop’ for a range of affordable health insurance choices. In addition, it will be a place for lower and middle-income uninsured Americans to go to apply for premium assistance tax credits and cost-sharing reduction subsidies to make health insurance affordable. The two groups will sponsor navigator programs to educate and inform health insurance consumers and to facilitate health insurance purchasing. Finally, they will play a regulatory role, requiring the Qualified Health Plans (QHPs) they offer to meet certain quality and information disclosure requirements and reviewing QHP premiums and performance.

Click here to view the status of your state on health insurance exchanges.


Before you determine how much the Affordable Care Act will cost you, have a discussion with someone who understands the details surrounding the reform. CBIZ Memphis has a specialized team of individuals trained in all facets of healthcare reform. Schedule a meeting with one of our experts by contacting Megan Murdock, 901.685.5575.

April 9, 2013

The Memphis office of CBIZ MHM held a two-day event for women in business in the Mid-South. With the recent launch of their internal CBIZ Women’s Advantage Networking Circles program for women executives, the office is expanding its efforts externally to provide women decision makers access to a network of highly skilled, seasoned, professional women. Following the mantra, “CBIZ Women Helping Women Succeed in Business,” the program is making national headlines. The woman behind its success, Nancy Mellard, National Leader of CBIZ Women’s Advantage, travelled from Kansas City to Memphis to attend both events and was a panelist at the Women & Business Seminar.

A cocktail party at the Lexus of Memphis the night before the Seminar served as a meeting place for influential women in Memphis to mingle and network. The event included hors d’oeuvres by a local catering company, Pepper & Salt of Lunchbox Eats. Women from the CBIZ MHM Memphis office were also in attendance, using the opportunity to create new touch points and gain valuable insight into the successful careers of other women in the area.

The second of the two events, the Women & Business Seminar hosted by The Daily News featured keynote speaker, Susan Stephenson, CEO and co-founder of Independent Bank. Her presentation titled ‘Women and Business: Some Thoughts on Glass Ceilings and Glass Slippers’ covered a brief history of women’s rights and helped to launch discussions on where women have been and are currently. Stephenson’s take on her favorite childhood story of Cinderella was a fun, albeit serious, back-story encouraging women to not wait for a fairy god-mother to make a name for themselves. A panel discussion was followed by an audience-led Q & A session. The panel included Nancy Mellard, Pamela Irons, Attorney at Jackson Lewis, and Natasha Donerson, President/CEO of Success Unlimited.

The Memphis office counts both of these events as successes, and has received positive feedback from several of the attendees. Going forward the office hopes to continue using their CBIZ Women’s Advantage as an opportunity for business and professional development.

April 4, 2013

CBIZ Security & Advisory Services (SAS), LLC has expanded its payment data security service offering by obtaining the prestigious Qualified Security Assessor Designation (QSA) from the Payment Card Industry Security Standards Council. This designation enables CBIZ SAS, which specializes in data security, risk management and consulting services, to assess compliance and validate adherence to the PCI Data Security Standard.

This achievement will allow CBIZ Security & Advisory Services to expand their services, increasing its capability to perform a variety of tasks, and help them to become more cost-effective and operationally efficient. "Information security is an ever-evolving field that requires an understanding of both technical solutions and business process controls to secure confidential information," says Brenda Brigman, Executive Vice President. "This accreditation places CBIZ Security & Advisory Services among a select group of providers."

In order to become a certified QSA company, CBIZ Security & Advisory Services undertook a thorough review process to provide evidence that the company delivers PCI assessments in accordance with the PCI Data Security Standards at the highest level of performance and industry standards.

Karen Cassella, Executive Vice President of CBIZ Security & Advisory Services, states, "We can now provide clients with Qualified Security Assessors (PCI QSA) who have been certified by the Council to validate PCI DSS compliance. This is required when going through a PCI compliance audit."

The goal of PCI DSS standards is to minimize the risk of credit card fraud and to prevent other data security risks. Both large and small organizations that store, process or transmit payment card data via the five major payment card providers -- Visa, MasterCard, American Express, JCB and Discover -- must meet the standards to maintain the ability to accept payment cards. If not, they could face acquirer penalties and impair customer confidence and trust in doing business with them.

To find out more about our PCI Team and the services we offer visit: www.cbiz.com/pci.

April 2, 2013

The Memphis Business Journal recently partnered with Healthiest Employers, a wellness technology and data research firm focused on corporate health, to spotlight companies in the Mid-South who have outstanding health and wellness initiatives and cultures. The Memphis office of CBIZ MHM was selected as a finalist in the '2-99 Employees' category and was honored at an awards breakfast Thursday, March 28, at the Hilton Memphis.

Honorees were selected based on their participation in a survey that measured their workplace wellness efforts. Our office-wide fitness challenges, including our Biggest Loser and Pedometer Challenges, coupled with our CBIZ Great Health Program, are instrumental in our wellness success. We also implemented a Flexible Work Arrangement, unique to our Memphis office, giving our employees an opportunity to balance their work and life schedules, reducing their stress and improving their overall health.

During our busiest times of the year, we boost productivity by maintaining a healthy workplace environment. We provide weekly fruit deliveries during this time and implement fitness challenges to supplement healthy eating habits. Our most successful fitness programs were suggested by employees, as they take ownership in their own well-being and create a culture they want to be a part of and contribute to. Our Biggest Loser challenge encourages healthy eating and daily exercise habits. The team dynamic provides large amounts of support and last year's group lost a total of over 80 pounds. Another challenge currently in progress is our Pedometer Challenge. We show that getting in shape doesn't have to be complicated -- it can be as simple as walking.

As an incentive to participate, we allow employees to join in on the fun free of cost and make the challenges competitive, giving prizes to the overall winners. Additionally, we are fortunate to have national resources such as the CBIZ Great Health program easily accessible to all of our employees. The Memphis office is proud to have been selected as a finalist in these awards and is committed to maintaining these high standards of health and wellness in our workplace.

March 28, 2013

Today's post comes from our Employee Benefit Plan Specialist, Linda Lauer. The following excerpt is taken from her article, "Why Selecting the Right Auditor is Critical," in the December issue of HR Professionals Magazine.

Department of Labor (DOL) statistics indicate there are approximately 75,000 ERISA audits performed annually by over 10,000 CPA firms. Only a small percentage of these CPA firms audit more than 100 employee benefit plans on an annual basis. Surprisingly, there are approximately 8,000 CPA firms performing five or less employee benefit plan audits and 5,000 CPA firms performing only one employee benefit plan audit. As result of so many plan audits being performed by CPA firms with little experience in these types of audits, the DOL continues to find a significant number of employee benefit plan audits do not meet DOL requirements.

The DOL performs routine inspections of auditors performing employee benefit plan audits. Some of the deficiencies found in these inspections include the following:

  • Failure of the auditor to adequately plan the audit
  • Using inadequate audit programs
  • No evidence of any audit work performed in regards to investments, contributions, benefit payments, participant data or prohibited transactions
  • Failure to test year-end values on investments and failure to test investment transactions (for full-scope audits)
  • Failure to test payroll and deferrals for employee contributions
  • Failure to test eligibility to receive distributions
  • Failure to test eligibility to participate, forfeitures and allocations to participant accounts

Best practices for auditors performing employee benefit plan audits include a commitment to quality from the top down within the accounting firm. The firm should make “employee benefit plan audits” a specialized or niche practice within their firm and devote specific resources to this area of practice with expertise in the employee benefit plan industry. The audit firm should also conduct internal reviews or inspections of their audits, as well as conduct annual training to their staff specifically tailored to the unique characteristics of employee benefit plans.

A quality audit will not only help protect the financial integrity of your employee benefit plan, but will also help ensure the funds will be available to pay benefits. An incomplete, inadequate or untimely audit report may result in penalties being assessed against the plan sponsor. As the plan’s administrator, it is imperative for the plan sponsor to hire an auditor with specific experience in employee benefit plans in order to minimize your risk for any such penalties.

March 26, 2013

You may be wondering where our blog has been for the past year, and we are happy to report that we are re-entering the Blog-o-Sphere bigger and better than ever! Formerly known as Thompson Dunavant PLC, we have been a part of the local business community since 1997.  Since we have joined forces with CBIZ, one of the leading financial services providers in the country, and Mayer Hoffman McCann P.C., an independent CPA firm, we are confident in our national resources. Currently, we have access to a multitude of service lines with over 130 locations nationwide.

So, what can you expect from our local blog? We hope to ensure that we are the same firm, full of a tremendous amount of Memphis pride, but with a much larger reach in regards to our service capabilities. We also hope that this blog serves as a place for you to get to know our CBIZ Memphis team on a more personal level. Discover our experts through their passions; whether it is Employee Benefit Plan Audits, Affordable Care Act Consulting, or Sales Tax Compliance, we will bring you a variety of different subject matter.

Keep in mind, we are not all work and no play. We boast our social and community involvement committees, and the efforts they take to get us out of the office, whether it be a trip to a Grizzlies game or a chance to volunteer at the St. Jude Marathon. Our blog will serve as a glimpse into our ‘work hard, play hard’ mantra, as we will post about these events as well.

We want you to be a part of the conversation! Feel free to share our posts and/or leave a comment.


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