Automated Compliance Management: How automation addresses the challenges of compliance procedures
Compliance has always played a pivotal role in migrating unnecessary risk from the organisation, but a number of well documented corporate scandals has propelled this key business function to even greater prominence. Whether your organisation is legally obliged to adhere to government laws, or aims to achieve non-compulsory industry standards such as ISO, you will be committing significant resources to establishing and monitoring compliance procedures.
It will therefore come as no surprise to hear that many compliance professionals, and those intrinsically involved with day-to-day compliance procedures, are now placing greater emphasis on the enforcement of established best practises and procedures. Enforcement to many readers now represents the hardest and most challenging aspect of compliance, as human nature itself fights against conformity and is often the root cause for protocol breakdowns.
What are the forces driving compliance?
Before compliance professionals can review, adopt and deploy a technology solution to monitor, enforce and report on compliance procedures, they must first identify and map out the sources of compliance pressures and the degree of pressure each source emits on the organisation. The main source of compliance pressure can be placed under four clearly defined categories:
- General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
- Government legislation
- Industry standards
- Trading partner liability
- Internal procedures and best practice
No one will question the positive contribution that compliance management procedures and protocols have made to offsetting organisational risk. Neither will business managers deny the improvements this function has made to quality assurance and productivity. Yet, compliance officers and managers still cite a number of common challenges that are undermining the significant number of processes and procedures that have been set in place. These include:
- Cultural ‘buy in’
- Speed of commerce
- Disparate business units
- Lack of technological cohesiveness
The impact of compliance on productivity and competitiveness
Compliance ultimately means structuring workloads and enforcing procedures on employees. The manual processing of compliance activities, or red tape as its more commonly referred to, essentially dictates the physical productivity of the workforce and can significantly reduce the competitiveness of an organisation. The challenge for compliance professionals is to identify where business process automation, workflow and system integration can eradicate all or the majority of the physical processing aspect of adhering to compliance protocols, or where training and education is more applicable.
Ensuring compliance data is relevant, reliable, auditable and readily available
Due to the high profile publication of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002, many organisations view compliance as a one-off or end-of-year event when in reality it is an on-going and dynamic business function. Compliance professionals are faced with the fact that data is being constantly updated, enriched and passed to other departments for further processing. Keeping track of business processes and, more importantly, ensuring that they occur within the correct timeframe is a significant challenge for industry professionals.
Automated Compliance Management: Addressing the challenges of compliance
Developing a future-proof solution to an organisation’s compliance challenges should start with the thorough analysis of the forces driving compliance. Upon completion of this analysis, organisations can then establish a technological and managerial framework in which to address the macro and micro challenges facing the company.
The unpredictable nature of employees, ever increasing workloads and the growing importance of accountability is placing increasing pressure on compliance teams.
For a more in-depth look at this subject as well as a detailed plan to address compliance processes through automated compliance management, download the eBook below or call us on +44 (0)330 99 88 700.