Taming the Compliance Beast

September 16, 2020

Somethings can make a person’s skin crawl, make him groan or simply feel awkward. 

Say the word “compliance” and watch how some people either grimace, go ‘ugh’ or simply shake their heads: Compliance may sound to some as a big, ugly, furry, shadowy beast trying to wrap its unseen arms around a business, preventing people from doing anything.

How many times have you seen text like this in an email:

 Compliance doesn’t agree...compliance wants it changed...compliance says you can’t say that...

We’ve all read those comments and ‘feedback’ too many times.

While the term may sound like a hulking beast stalking about, it’s there so that the company will have in-house guidelines to follow, and those guidelines should follow external guidelines. And when these two are in sync, the company’s life will be easier; it’s reputation will also grow. If you know how to “tame” it,compliance can not only spare you some awkward and legally painful situations,it can save you from late fees, fines, take a hit to the reputation, loss of good standing (which carries a lot of weight), and more.

 

Effective ways to tame the compliance beast.

The compliance function should be an autonomous one, to give it the freedom to collaborate with multiple departments. Sustaining open communication with other departments is vital to reduce risk. 

 

Hire a compliance officer

Every self-respecting company in the global financial transfer business requires at least a compliance officer, if not a department. A Good compliance officer knows what compliance hazards are (internal and external); be on top of the latest regulatory changes; devise guidelines to follow industry best practices;identify ways of being more efficient.

 

Use technological tools

Slowly,like digital transformation in enterprise companies, technology is making its presence felt in the world of compliance, with compliance software for automating tasks, document organization, analytics, and more.

 

Train everybody (including executives, CEO and CIO)

Everyone in the company needs to be aware of the importance of archiving, understand matters such as the company’s electronic communication policy, written supervisory procedures (WSP) and if changes are made in the policy, should be alerted to them as well.

 

Hire an outside expert

When in doubt – hire an expert compliance consultant. It’ll cost much less than the fines you may pay for not following compliance regulations. All you need to do is Google ‘financial compliance fines.’ Convinced?

 

Audit on a regular basis

There’s another word not many are crazy about – audit ­­– but, there’s nothing for it: Internal audits can be an effective way of discovering deficiencies that can cause the company to be non-compliant. In other words: Better to seethe ‘oops’ with your own eyes than through regulatory eyes.

 

In the end if the day, compliance not only is there for your protection; it’s there to help make your company rum more efficiently, your employees more knowledgeable and help increase the positive reputation of your company, which is an invaluable factor in today’s business world.

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