Managing regulatory changes and amending corresponding internal policies to stay compliant are an ever-present, never-ending part of any compliance professional’s job. By our count, in 2015 FINRA released 52 regulatory notices – an average of one per week – and that’s excluding the notices released by other agencies. We’ve also noticed that our customers who have global oversight across their operations often send out an average of one new policy, procedure, or update
every day in order to address shifting regulatory policies and address emerging threats. That’s a lot to track!
There are currently two leading practices that our customers utilize to address this challenge. These steps not only help you to ensure compliance, but they also help you to improve efficiency.
Unify Systems. In a recent
white paper, PwC found that more than 50% of large financial institutions are using 11 or more analytic and detection systems. Furthermore, the PwC research shows that at almost 70% of financial institutions, analysts and investigators were spending more than a third of their time on manual processes to gather the key information they need to conduct comprehensive investigations. In our experience, we’ve learned that something as simple as moving between disparate systems during the course of an investigation can contribute to these figures and really hampers a team’s productivity.
We’ve found that organizations that unify these disparate systems (usually through the implementation of case management solutions) make it possible to close out investigations faster. Even small wins count – when organizations send out policy and regulatory updates through their investigation platform, their teams don’t need to search for them in their emails, documents, or online. If that process equates to only 10 minutes of time saved each day per each investigator, you can help that team member save more than 40 hours over the course of the year. And that’s for
each person on your team!
Increase Oversight. Providing sufficient oversight across an organization is a constant struggle for many compliance teams, not only because of the volume of policies and regulations that need to be followed, but also because of the time it takes to get everyone on the same page.
According to Danielle Tierney, an analyst with Aite Group, getting compliance teams updated on new policies and regulations is one of the top three areas that compliance officers spend their time on each day. And that time doesn’t even include ensuring that their teams are actually compliant, which is their primary function! Interestingly, it is also case management technology that usually makes this increased oversight possible (not to mention easier) because it provides a birds’ eye view across an organization’s regulatory profile – and in a way that also pleases regulators when they come knocking to review processes and procedures.
Oversight goes hand in hand with the system unification in that one process enables the other. By giving compliance officers a solution that quickly and easily allows them to distribute these rules and policies to their teams – and which also lets them track who has reviewed and potentially attested to key rules – they can reclaim many hours of potentially lost time and apply it to other compliance-related functions within the department.
Unfortunately, regulations don’t exist to help you get your job done faster and go home earlier. While they are integral to today’s financial world, it is up to individual institutions to work within regulatory and policy boundaries without letting key areas like client experience, investigations, and finances suffer.
Regulations are here to stay. How you choose to work with them is up to you, but if you’re able to do so easily, intelligently, and still ensure compliance, I think that’s a slam-dunk.