The necessity of compliance management ensures that businesses take it seriously. However, many businesses end up not being satisfied with the results. No matter how many resources they dedicate to managing compliance, the results seem to stay the same. That happens because managing compliance isn’t simply a process that can be improved by increasing the employees working on it – there are diminishing returns in increasing compliance personnel. If businesses truly want to make a difference, they need to look at their overall compliance management framework and make structural improvements.

Step 1 – Increase compliance visibility

We can only manage the things that we can control, and we can only control the things we know about. What is most remarkable is that most compliance managers end up having to maintain compliance levels without any type of holistic view of the organization. They have no way of seeing how compliance is being enforced throughout the organization, but they are blamed if they overlook something and it ends up being non-compliant.

While it is the duty of the compliance manager or officer to ensure that things are done in a compliant manner, if we truly want them to be able to perform their job efficiently, we need to give them some visibility into organization-wide compliance. This is a major problem in the way many businesses handle compliance. Non-compliance needs to be manually detected and communicated to the manager, otherwise they will never know about the problem.

Step 2 – Unify compliance information

The next step is to create a central repository of compliance management related information. This is another major problem that businesses face – their compliance information is scattered across the organization. There are multiple copies of the same file on different computers. Different versions of the same document spread out in people’s email inboxes. Files and forms that are stored on the server. There is no single organized manner of storing all the compliance and information data.

Organizing all this information and storing it in a single location has many different benefits. It makes it easier for people to collaborate. It makes it easier for management to monitor the different compliance activities under progress. It allows people to easily find and verify any information or reference in another document.

Step 3 – Automate the menial parts of compliance management

Compliance officers and managers use a worryingly high percentage of their working hours on menial processes. The compliance officer/manager has niche expertise and are thus expensive personnel. To have them spend so much time on things which can be handled through automation is a waste of resources. Modern compliance management solutions introduce robotic process automation in tasks as simple as scheduling processes to complex processes like compliance monitoring.

At this point we can safely assume that automation will handle most compliance management tasks in the future. There are already multiple solutions available which automate large parts of compliance management. It will probably only take a few more years for us to create the technology needed for full compliance automation.

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Step 4 – Create a culture of compliance

The last and the most important step that businesses can take to improve compliance management is to create a culture of compliance. Some businesses act as if they were ‘born-compliant’, while others struggle to adhere to compliance the best they can. With a little bit of training, monitoring, and process reengineering we can create a culture where compliance is always factored into every decision. People cannot be forced to change and take compliance more seriously, which is why simply introducing stricter policies and increased monitoring does not work.

Compliance management systems work so well because they implement these steps with the help of software solution. Instead of ad-hoc solutions and processes built from off the shelf office productivity software like Excel and Word, compliance management systems introduce dedicated compliance workflows. This doesn’t just allow businesses to achieve higher levels of compliance – it also increases the speed of many compliance processes exponentially.

Want to see how your organization’s compliance management framework can be improved with the help of compliance management technology? Get in touch with the 360factors team for a demo and a trial of the American Bankers Association endorsed Predict360 Compliance Management System.