Compliance And Regulations: Learning To Do Business “By The Book”

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We can certainly demand a lot from our company. We need our employees to be working effectively and we need to understand that in order to do business properly, everything needs to slot into place. But you have to remember that your company needs things from you. You need to have the right attitude, you need to have the due diligence in place, but you also need to understand the importance of compliance and doing things by the book. It’s natural that being law-abiding and correct in an ethical sense is natural. But compliance can be a hot topic. So when companies are under pressure to define these values we’ve got to remember that performing business “by the book” is about following a certain set of rules. Let’s show you the substantial components.

The Goals Associated With Compliance

In an obvious sense, it’s crucial to avoid criminal proceedings. From the business’ perspective, being committed to compliance is about having the right strategy in place. While there’s numerous legislation associated with complying you have to remember the importance of making the effort within the company framework. It’s always a good idea to have a business law attorney on your side to consult should you be unaware of the appropriate legislation. If you don’t make the effort to comply with associated regulations you could be punished with sanctions such as financial penalties or even be put in prison. In order to be compliant you’ve got to identify and minimize criminal behavior and react accordingly. This will help to reduce any risk from the business, especially in terms of economics and liability.

It’s also important to consider the social responsibilities. There are so many ethical components associated with compliance that they may not be given the same level of importance as following the rules and regulations. In terms of ethical components, we’ve got to consider our stakeholders such as employees and customers but we’ve also got to make sure that we adhere to moral values. Moral values are set out in many regulatory codes and bodies, especially in industries that are dealing with sensitive materials. But in any business, it’s crucial to have a clearly outlined approach to morals and ethics. While we have to be seen to be compliant in a legal sense due to the numerous penalties we have to remember the complying in an ethical sense is crucial to everybody’s human rights. It’s unfair to show preferential treatment and we have got to remember that each employee demands equal attention. And while it is greatly discussed in certain circles, when it comes to smaller businesses it can be brushed under the carpet somewhat which is not a good approach. But this is why we’ve got to start implementing certain components to benefit the business and the employees…

Implementing Compliance Within A Company

Compliance has to be in force but it also has to be monitored. This is where a CMS (Compliance Management System) can be used to implement appropriate rules and regulations within the company. The purpose of a CMS is to put this in place but also to make sure that compliance is part of the culture. This is one approach that needs maintaining, especially if you don’t operate with a transparent approach to business. We have to remember that compliance covers so many different areas and topics that developing a CMS is not so easy. This is why we’ve got to work on individual requirements. And this can prove to be a seismic challenge but there are ways around it. 

Creating Compliance Policies

Compliance policies are numerous online but rather than taking a general template and filling in the blanks it’s best to use a compliance policy but adapt it to the individual’s needs within the workplace. Generally speaking, compliance policies will cover many bases but you’ve got to give consideration to what your company needs. It’s not just in regards to the general approach to conduct but it’s also about making sure that each employee is aware of the sanctions process, as well as identifying specific issues that contravene the policies. Once you apply these, they need to be communicated openly throughout the business. While you can do this by sending messages or newsletters, incorporating training sessions and having it written into the contract are two other approaches that can be essential.

Should You Incorporate A Compliance Team?

The best way to create a compliance team would be to get experts from every department of the business. This way, you are able to cover every possible eventuality. If necessary, you can get external expertise. You could go to management consultants or lawyers but you could also go to the SBA and liaise with them to acquire more information. A compliance team, even in a small business, can be a godsend because you don’t need to keep track of every single thing. This could be the responsibility of the team.

Putting Compliance Into Operation

The responsibility sits firmly on the manager but you can delegate this to one single person to act as a chief compliance officer. You could also work with a compliance solutions company if you are looking to outsource. Once this is in place the tasks are varied but crucial. From implementing the CMS to monitoring quality control, as well as adapting to various changes within the working environment are all components that need addressing. This means that because it is such a complex approach to improving the business that it requires the right sort of person. It’s not necessarily about hiring a manager type, but it’s about having someone who is able to work with the right mindset.

Learning to do business by the book is about the whole approach to compliance and this means that when we begin to implement compliance and following the rules and regulations, we’ve got a solid structure to build our business upon. Rules and regulations aren’t the most interesting of subjects but they have to be incorporated. It’s far better to incorporate them on a cultural level rather than where everybody needs to follow the rules. If you’re embedding it on a cultural level it’s going to give you improved results across the board.

5 Things That Can Threaten Your Business Growth

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If you have embarked on a growth journey in your business it is important that you pay attention to the details and foolproof your plan, or you will face difficulties and spend all your resources and energy on putting out fires, instead of putting systems in place. Below you will find a few things that can threaten your business growth.

1. Industry Changes

No matter how good your business plan is, and how well it looks on paper, it is crucial that you test it in real conditions and the current market. If you are facing industry changes, or the priorities of your customers, your perfect business idea might fail. It is crucial that you keep an eye on your ideal client and change your approach according to their needs. Doing surveys and market research before launching can be a great way of making your plans bulletproof.

2. Competition

It is not enough to understand what your target market wants; you have to find a way to stand out from the competition and differentiate yourself in the market. You will need to identify a strong USP for your business that you can communicate through your social media and website content. After all, it is not what you sell, but the value you offer than matters to your potential clients. If you fail to research your competition, your offers will get lost in the white noise.

3. Regulations

Regulations are an important factor when it comes to carrying out any type of business. You should ensure that you are aware of the current and pending regulations, so new laws cannot put you out of business. For example, if you are planning on creating a new product, you will have to get it first approved and tested for safety in some industries, or you can be liable for any damage to the customer.

4. Reputation Damage

Many business owners make a mistake when creating a growth plan ignoring their existing customers. If you are planning on managing a rapid growth with success, it is crucial that you maintain the quality of service you are providing for your existing clients and the increase in volume doesn’t cause lower value or accuracy. When your reputation is damaged, you will not only reduce your chances of getting new clients, but your existing customers might leave you, too.

5. Unexpected Expenses

A reputational damage is often followed by financial loss, and if you don’t follow the regulations, you will even face financial penalties. Likewise, failing to deliver health and safety training, or ensuring that your vehicles and drivers are safe on the road can jeopardize your cash flow. Just imagine if one of your drivers was involved in a commercial truck accident and you had to pay compensation for the damage, how would your growth plan suffer?

There are plenty of ways you can ensure that your growth plan is not affected by things that are predictable or preventable. Take precautions and test your strategy on real life business scenarios.

Improve Oversight and Transparency for Your Business

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Being able to oversee what goes on in your company is essential if you want to be an effective business person. It’s important that you know what’s going on at all times, and that you aren’t kept in the dark. You don’t want to have sections of your business where you’re not sure what’s been going on lately. You should be on top of all the numbers, the productivity levels and other information that it’s crucial for you to know. Of course, there are some insignificant things that are unlikely to matter to the big boss. However, overall, greater transparency and better oversight are better for your business.

Get Better Understanding of Important Regulations

If you want to improve the way that you oversee your business, you should make sure that you understand any important regulations. Having to comply with regulations can be annoying for a business owner, but most can still recognize that it often benefits them. For example, regulations related to safety will protect their employees and by extension protect them from any legal trouble. By making sure that you understand any regulations you have to follow, you can be sure that you’re implementing them correctly and monitoring everything well too.

Use the Right Software

There’s almost no situation where finding the right software won’t help you improve your business. If you want to increase oversight and transparency for your company, there are plenty of tools that could help you out. You can find software that helps you manage your finances better or monitor risk management. You can improve IT too, with software designed to help you easily monitor your entire network. You can automatically map out your network and keep an eye on what’s up and what’s down, enabling your IT staff to fix problems faster. Before implementing new software, make sure you look at the pros and cons of introducing a new tool.

Institute Regular Checks and Reviews

Putting rules and regulations in place is essential for your business, but it’s pointless if you don’t check that they’re being followed. Even when everyone is trying their best to get their job done correctly, there can still be mistakes. That’s why it’s important to carry out regular checks and reviews of things like your finances. Mistakes can occur at any time, and people are better at spotting other people’s mistakes than they are at noticing their own. Make sure that you regularly review different departments to check results and monitor improvements.

Encourage Openness

Encouraging people at your company to be open with sharing their thoughts and opinions can make everything more transparent and give you better oversight. Your employees should feel like they’re able to raise an issue that they’re concerned about or offer an idea on how they think things should be done better. You might even extend this to your customers, building a community that helps to give you a better idea of how your business is viewed by the public.

Increase oversight and transparency in your business by being as involved as possible. Encourage others to do their part too.