Andersen Plans Ahead for Internal Changes

There's nothing like being proactive, and Arthur Andersen is exhibiting signs that it plans to restructure itself internally in order to defend itself against potential mishaps. The goal, though, is to keep the firm in tact.

Why? For starters, Andersen does not want to face independence issues like the ones that surfaced late last year for Big 5 rival PricewaterhouseCoopers. Second, and perhaps more importantly, Andersen wants to keep the firm as one unit, and not split off its consulting unit (different than Andersen Consulting) like other firms are doing.

Andersen is justifying it's position by saying that it's internal controls are strong, and even plans to possibly report more financial data to regulators in hopes of not disguising any of its processes or operations.

The firm also is concerned that more personnel will leave in favor of the "dot.coms," and hopes to restructure it's benefits and compensation packages to meet expected demand.

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