Being Innovative and Compliant is a Challenge

published on Compliance Management
Achieving robust, yet cost-effective regulatory compliance is a challenge for general counsel. Several high profile leaks (such as the recent Panama Papers) have pushed further reforms. How then, do corporate lawyers add value to their compliance programs? The information company Legal Week Intelligence in association with Pinsent Masons sought to research how U.K. organisations manage their compliance activities. They collected one hundred responses from in-house and compliance professionals based in the U.K. Below is a summary of their findings.

Organisations will spend more:

The increasing complexity of the regulatory environment is a fact of life for in-house legal and compliance teams. Just the sheer volume of laws that organisations have to comply with creates a challenge, as does the scope and reach. As if managing one’s own company wasn’t difficult enough, companies are increasingly being held accountable for the actions of their suppliers and other third parties. These are all reasons why that when asked if they expect their regulatory spend to increase over the next 5 years, 73% of respondents say they do.

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Tackling the challenge:

Companies are hesitant to tackle the challenge and develop compliance processes. Organisations appear to be tacking the burden in the tried and tested way: hiring. During the coming year, organisations are likely to appoint legal advisers and hire more in-house personnel in an attempt to remain compliant. The use of software solutions is the least likely course of action, perhaps because it implies the steepest learning curve. However, when implemented properly, software can bring a level of consistency that paper-based systems just can’t match.

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Innovation and compliance:

It’s not just money that helps companies be innovative. Currently, only 33% of businesses bring together internal and external innovation. It’s interesting that the study found that 72% of organizations that set aside a budget for innovating  have implemented ways of meeting regulatory challenges through systems, software or processes. Only 17% without a budget have explored this option. For respondents that had no budget, their innovations involved manual and paper-based processes, such as forming a committee or creating systems out of Excel spreadsheets.

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Takeaway:

Three ingredients appear successful for an effective compliance program: advisers, in-house personnel, and software. At present, the respondents in this survey don’t appear to be designating a technology budget – indicating they are not ready to enjoy the benefits of using software. Legisway provides a solution for compliance management to help organisations manage their compliance requirements, policies, and deadlines. By streamlining processes in a single platform, organisations can minimise risk and maximise control. Source: Legal Week

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