When it comes to compliance, many organizations struggle. There are several regulatory agencies, and depending on your industry, market, geographical area, or mission, your organization may be required to prove compliance with more than one set of regulations.
That’s difficult enough, but regulations often change, and that can be hard to keep up with. Yet, if your organization falls out of compliance, you could be subject to fines or other sanctions. For this reason, we often hear from business owners who need an easy way to track and prove compliance.
We believe assessments are key to proving compliance — but most businesses need to change their assessment process to track compliance effectively.
Learn more: Why narrative security assessments don’t work
Assessment & compliance: what organizations get wrong
When tracking compliance, many organizations do perform assessments, but they’re using their own in-house assessment tool – often an Excel spreadsheet. Or organizations call in consultants to take care of the assessment for them. In both cases, compliance tends to be assessed all at once, in one big audit.
There are pros and cons to each approach. You can save money by doing your own assessments, for example, and if you’re using a consultant you’ll have access to the expertise of a professional.
On the downside, neither approach scales well. Excel spreadsheets can become unwieldy if you’re evaluating several sites – it’s hard to track results in a spreadsheet, and they don’t offer you an actionable list of things that need to be done in order to get up to code. It’s also hard to catch up on compliance if you fall behind.
As for consultants, it can be costly to send consultants to several sites, particularly if you’re using a team and trying to get an assessment done in a hurry. This can also lead to inconsistencies — if all the consultants aren’t using the same questionnaire or checklist, it’s likely you’ll get different results for every site.
Learn more: What You Don’t Know About Area-Based Assessments
Why compliance should be assessed every day
Compliance is a lot like doing the dishes. You need to be compliant with regulations every day, just like you need to eat off clean dishes every day. If you let your compliance go until the last minute, it’s like letting dishes pile up in the sink until you can’t ignore them anymore — you end up with a big, intimidating project.
My biggest advice to any business managing compliance is to evaluate it regularly; daily or weekly. Tackle a few small things every day, and invest in a tool that lets you easily monitor your compliance, and which keeps you up to date with changing regulations and rules. If the regulations you need to keep up with are complex, form a compliance committee that will help you keep on top of compliance.
By keeping up with compliance, you can avoid fines and keep your organization safe and secure.
Need help keeping up with compliance? Schedule your personalized demo today.