Compliance is non-negotiable. It ensures you run an efficient business that operates on fair terms for all.
It’s worth remembering that in most situations, compliance procedures are a good thing that serves the interests of everybody. That said, because firms are comprised of many individuals, not all of them can meet the required procedural standards. One department, or even a single employee, can risk everything.
Moreover, some of these shortcomings can be particularly consequential. Only a handful of companies showed they were ready for EU green rules in 2022, for example.
Compliance is vital to your company’s prospects. Here are a few ways to ensure it’s consistently undertaken in your firm.
Utilize the Staff Handbook
Some firms often underappreciate the staff handbook. Nevertheless, it can be essential to your firm’s compliance strategies.
Try to use yours effectively. Fill it with information on the latest compliance procedures employees must be wary of. Update it regularly when needed, and request that workers bring themselves up to speed on any changes. Allowing time in their schedule to read the amendments is strongly advised so they can more easily make time to start learning.
After all, even the House of Commons has a staff handbook; though it’s often reported MPs are flouting rules in one way or another. Instead of having it be a seldom-referenced document, your staff handbook should be the basis of your firm’s operations. It should be composed so that it can be constantly referenced and guide employees through much of the uncertainty they might experience.
Have the staff handbook be part of your new starter’s induction period. Ask workers if they have any thoughts on its contents and if they can spot any glaring admissions or clunk phrases. Provide electronic copies on your cloud server. Ultimately, the document can be something you all work on to build as much understanding around compliance as possible.
Introduce an LMS
Depending on your business’s sector, the world of compliance can be incredibly fast-moving. Sometimes your employees will need to learn about procedural updates while on the go.
Like the staff handbook, an LMS could be an intrinsic part of your company culture. It can inform much about your company’s operations, equip workers with greater confidence, and help them independently clarify their compliance position. Everything will run more efficiently for its inclusion.
An LMS learning management system from Kallidus can give employees the resources to stay informed. Compliance training is one of the many tasks that can be undertaken on the platform and can be accessed anytime and anywhere. It’s self-led development, and workers’ learning progress can also be tracked if you wish to support their growth.
No training is required to use these tools, but if you have questions, experts at Kallidus provide clarity if you contact them. You could also try a free demo so that you and your staff can get familiar with and feel more confident about the LMS before fully committing to its uses.
Checklists are a great sign of a company’s preparedness. If all of your important processes have a checklist summary, workers have fewer excuses to disregard rules and regulations.
Hiring and firing procedures can benefit from a checklist. Health and safety and data protection-related tasks should also have important tasks outlined for the relevant workers. Checklists might seem elementary, but they ensure a comprehensive breakdown of all the most important tasks in the business. Any employees feeling distracted and overwhelmed for any reason can refer to them.
Ensure that it’s clear who the checklist is designed for. Present the checklist with a clear design and format, with short, concise sentences throughout. It’s also recommended that you collaborate on these documents with the relevant department head to be certain that the document is useful. They may wish to gain their team’s feedback, too.
Rigorously test all instructions given so you and your colleagues can be certain of the checklist’s credibility. Creating digital copies on the company’s secure cloud server is once again recommended. They can be easily amended, shared, and printed off this way.
Monitor Your Business Partners
It’s easy to have an introspective view while worrying about compliance. However, it’s important to consider how other firms’ activities may affect you, especially if you have a business deal underway.
For instance, it may be your suppliers that are dropping the compliance ball in such a way that their oversights have consequences for your company too. Periodically analyse their activities and also monitor their performance levels. Expect them to be forthcoming if you have concerns about their compliance procedures.
Of course, you can’t always control how others behave in business. If necessary, seek out other partners elsewhere that take compliance procedures more seriously. After all, most suppliers may hold sensitive data regarding your business, and your firm’s prospects can be jeopardized if they’re not suitably protecting it. A switch may need to be swift. Request they erase your company data once the partnership is terminated.
Evaluate prospective business partners before any deal is struck so you can be certain of a bountiful b2b dynamic. Do they advertise their accreditations around any compliance procedures? Have they made specific mention of compliance and protecting business partners’ interests? What do related testimonials say? Only when you’re certain of a prospective business partner’s ethics and culture should you engage.
Study Past Errors
For all your wanting of compliance, a few wrong turns are bound to occur occasionally, especially if your business has many employees on the payroll. After all, nobody is immune to human error, and oversights do occur.
Still, your company must have countermeasures for occasional lapses in compliance procedures. Not only is damage control essential, but the opportunity to dissect any moments of failure should be snatched up immediately. There’s always something to learn in these instances, as well as actionable steps to take too.
Your firm’s attitude to compliance can determine how successful these efforts are. While keeping up with rules and regulations is essential, employees need to feel like there’s room to pick up the pieces of any mishaps to take full advantage of these teachable experiences. If punishments are too severe and the culture is too oppressive, workers might cower away from these moments out of fear.
Host meetings with the relevant teams to figure out what went wrong. Draft compliance processes and see if they can be streamlined by eliminating unnecessary steps. Common mistakes can happen when audits don’t run like clockwork or when colleagues have conflicts of interest. Try to identify those instances as a team if you can.
Outsource Certain Key Processes
Despite all your efforts to train and upskill your workforce, not all of them will become compliance experts in the time you hope. Some employees may need more time to understand thanks, especially if they only joined the company recently and are somewhat fresh to the industry.
Therefore, it may be a good idea to outsource key compliance processes for a while. These entities will typically have a streamlined focus on one aspect of compliance, which allows them to keep up with regulation changes and have more in-depth knowledge of their area of expertise.
For example, some firms will help with documentation procedures, while others will offer support in financial reporting, contractor insurance policies, and accreditation validation. You may wish to oversee some areas of compliance yourself while outsourcing others, so know that different combinations of input are valid.