While keeping data safe from modern cyberthreats is difficult enough, you also have to keep in mind compliance with common regulations, i.e., ensuring your company’s compliance to SOX, which deals with transparency in disclosures from public companies. Nowadays, it’s not enough for businesses to rely on dismissive financial documents that satisfy the intermittent audit; you need to level up your game, and create detailed day-to-day records of activities. You are also mandated to have these records available for a prescribed duration.
Non-compliance can lead your enterprise to business disruption and productivity loss. FMP Global states that being non-compliant is twice as expensive as the cost of meeting and keeping up with compliance requirements.
Research from Globalscape also shows that the yearly cost of non-compliance for businesses amounts to an average of $14.8 million, a staggering 45 percent boost since 2011. Meanwhile, the cost of compliance was discovered to average $5.5 million, which increased 43 percent from 2011.
With all these challenges in mind, you should consider implementing compliance management software for your organization. Although there are plenty of options out there in the market, you should research the best compliance tools before getting in touch with a compliance management system provider.
To help you, here are some tips on how to select the perfect compliance management software:
1. Enterprise specialization
Before picking a compliance management system, take a look at the industries the solution supports. Some solutions focus on specific sectors like IT, healthcare, food, and insurance, while others are developed as generic systems that can be customized per the organization’s needs. It’s wise to prioritize your organization’s needs before making your choice. You should also be able to identify the issues you want this software to address, so you know which solutions and compliance tools to equip.
2. Compliance specifications
Once you’ve laid out the issues you want your software to resolve, the next move is to list all the regulations and policies that your organization needs to follow. Conduct a quick review of the compliance requirements your organization needs to adhere to, so you can cross-check to see if the compliance management system meets these requirements.
3. Unmatched reporting solutions
Ensuring safety and compliance for your business is critical, which is why you need to select compliance management software designed to eradicate error-prone and time-consuming manual reporting. One of the key elements of a compliance management system is document control, so if you’re thinking about purchasing one, choose a solution that delivers an inclusive and verifiable compliance reporting solution that leaves nothing to chance.
As for Active Directory (AD) management, it’s best to purchase software equipped with a built-in report library that houses an extensive set of reports that can provide critical data like distribution lists, user accounts, and users’ most recent logon times and security groups, among others.
4. Easy account and password creation and modification
This is especially beneficial for companies looking for a system to assist them in managing their AD. Pick software that also allows you to create users in bulk with all the necessary attributes. Ensure enabling or moving accounts is easy to do—cleaning up inactive user accounts in your AD should also be a breeze. For password management, it’s best to have a system that allows you to reset multiple passwords, customize password settings, and activate or deactivate users with expired passwords.
5. Foolproof compliance tools
One of the reasons why you’re probably in search of a compliance management system is because you want to increase the efficiency of your operations. How can you accomplish that if you’re stuck with software that isn’t easy to understand?
When selecting compliance tools, your best bet is to rely on software with an intuitive interface that can be easily understood by your team members. At the end of the day, you want to have a positive user experience right from the software’s overall look to its packaging, features, and the significance of its attributes for end users.
Simplicity is the key to enhancing productivity. No matter how many cutting edge tools your software is equipped with, if they’re not big on usability, then they’re simply not worth your purchase, or the added amount of time you have to spend learning and integrating this software with your office operations.
6. Data safekeeping
Another factor to consider in your selection is the ability of your software to guarantee data integrity. Data breaches are common and tough to deal with. As per Forbes, the first half of 2019 witnessed 3,813 data breaches, which exposed over 4.1 billion records to prying eyes. Additionally, 3.2 billion of these records were exposed by only eight breaches. The exposed reports consisted mostly of emails and passwords. This is why it’s important to choose a platform that has a mature security framework, because any compromise can cost you your clients and your entire enterprise.
7. Enhanced multi-level workflow
Some processes need multiple approvals. For example, say you’re reviewing an invoice for compliance. One section of your team needs to check if it meets the compliance requirements. Then, you need to check if it has all the necessary vendor information before placing the invoice on the payment line and processing it. You can assign these tasks via compliance management software, and the assignment or process won’t be finalized until it has gained multiple approvals from your team members. This feature greatly helps in ensuring both minimal risk and data integrity for your organization.
8. Security delegation
Active Directory security and permissions delegation is one of the most essential functions for IT professionals, especially if the service is facilitated by multiple administrator groups. One of the key elements of a compliance management system is its ability to warrant organizational unit (OU) and group-based delegation.
OU delegation allows administrators of your team to delegate permissions on the basis of users or groups. This ensures that only a special group of users can perform management tasks for some locations in your team. With this approach, every domain can also have its own set of administrators, and delegation can be accomplished at a granular level.
Meanwhile, as the name suggests, group delegation allows you to permit entire groups to perform tasks. This makes the task of creating help desk technicians easier and quicker, since roles can be assigned to a group rather than individual users. Modifying assigned roles when organizational requirements shift is also made less difficult by this option. In short, this delegation scheme results in more efficiency for your enterprise’s operations.
Last but not least, consider your budget in your selection. Check out compliance software pricing, and see if it aligns with the money you’re willing to spend on this technological initiative. Although some options can be quite pricey, think of this as an investment that will help your business in the long run.
Worth the effort
Now that you’ve considered the core features and factors to consider in obtaining good compliance management software, it’s time to make your choice. Just remember that this investment is highly dependent on enterprise thrust and specialization, as well as particular business processes. A compliance management system holds plenty of benefits and advantages, and it’s definitely better to spend on compliance rather than go through the hassles of being a non-compliant enterprise.
If you would like to equip your enterprise with more software to enhance your productivity, feel free to peruse a list of project management tools that can boost your organization’s operations.