Employers look to overhaul compliance functions with tech
- Nearly half of risk and compliance, internal audit, C-suite executive and board professionals plan to modernize their compliance functions by changing core compliance execution practices during the next 12 months, according to the results of a recent Deloitte poll.
- Specifically, Deloitte defines "compliance modernization" as a transformation that embraces technology such as cognitive compliance, automation and robotics. And while only 37% said they're expecting additional resources to aid in this effort, Deloitte said these technologies are increasingly within reach for those who have to do more with less.
- The adoption of this technology should be aimed at driving the integration of compliance with business strategy. When evaluating a solution, employers should ask themselves whether it will increase productivity, drive down costs and create value across the organization said, Tom Nicolosi, Deloitte Risk & Financial Advisory principal, Deloitte & Touche LLP, in a statement.
While compliance efforts often focus on avoiding litigation, there's so much more at stake.
A culture of honesty can improve employee retention, for example; a recent Gartner study revealed that workers are twice as likely to quit their jobs after observing compliance violations.
And a workplace that doesn't discriminate based on protected characteristics may enjoy an innovation boost; a January study from North Carolina Sate University found a diverse workforce in terms of gender, race and sexual orientation performs better at developing innovative products and services.
Those in risk and compliance may always have known this, but it now seems that others are taking notice. As Deloitte points out, such efforts used to lie solely with those departments; but now, C-suite executives and others are taking some responsibility — a move that the group called "encouraging."
The Frisco, Texas, school district provides an interesting case study of technology adoption gone right. The employer, which has more than 8,000 employees, recently automated several parts of its leave administration. Before the upgrade, the benefits department tracked employee leave via a spreadsheet, with little way to know whether employees had received proper forms or whether it was time to send a follow-up request to a doctor. When an executive saw them struggling, they quickly got the go-ahead to buy some new technology. Now, the system reminds them when it's time to execute certain tasks; record-keeping is automated and the district is saving money. And, of course, department employees are now much more confident that the company is in compliance with the law.