Compliance, 4 ways to encourage it
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An effective Compliance strategy must go through the understanding of the rules by workers, effective reporting processes and transparency in communication, so that employees comply with the regulations and companies avoid sanctions or fines that compromise their business.
Faced with the great challenge of communicating and making all employees understand legal obligations, EQS Group has disclosed the 4 keys to establishing an effective Compliance strategy.
“The Compliance team of any company must be able to generate a climate of trust that invites information and reporting, because it is the only way to ensure proper risk management” says Murray Grainger, Country Manager of EQS Group Spain and Portugal .
- Communication and dissemination of rules and obligations. Ignorance of the standard does not exempt from its compliance, which is why it is vitally important to communicate to employees what are the obligations with which they must comply in the performance of their duties. In many cases, ignorance is the result of a lack of interest or even time to keep up to date with legal developments, however, in many others it is the result of a lack of understanding. The management and communication of Compliance policies in a consistent manner is vital to keep employees motivated and to protect the company by identifying risks within a regulatory framework based on good governance and ethics.
These are the 4 ways to encourage Compliance to boost business
- Generate a culture of compliance. A complete knowledge of the legal framework and our legal and ethical obligations favors the creation of a culture of compliance, that is, that all workers are capable of identifying threats to the integrity of the company. Employees, being the ones who are living day by day and seeing the reality of work, are the most capable of observing an irregularity, although they are not the only ones. To create this culture, it is necessary that it emerge from the highest positions, that the managerial figures generate trust and be transparent with their way of acting. It is also crucial to generate employee interest by raising awareness, engaging in conversations and discussions about standards of conduct, ethics and good practice.
- Creation of effective complaint channels. Once this culture has been generated, the company must create an environment favorable to reporting. For this, effective communication and complaint channels must be established, which guarantee the anonymity and confidentiality of the complainant, making him feel that there are no reprisals for the complaint. Companies and employees must understand that any information about a possible legal breach only has a positive impact on the company and that their report contributes to the proper functioning and integrity of the business. There are different reporting channels that can be used so that employees can report all those activities that may generate suspicion. Traditionally, hotlines and anonymous emails have been the most used by companies of all sizes, however, these cannot comply with the new Law and its new standards of confidentiality and anonymity. Digital solutions such as complaint channels are the only ones that comply with the guidelines set by the Union.
- Appropriate follow-up of cases and transparency with sanctions. To enable all of this, employees need to be aware that their information is taken into consideration and not dismissed without investigation. Regardless of the fact that an infraction is finally being committed and a process is initiated, all information must lead to an investigation process in which the informant must be, if not involved, at least knowledgeable. Similarly, in the event that the information triggers an internal process or even a criminal process, the company must be transparent with all employees about what has happened, although it must be done in compliance with confidentiality and data protection regulations. Even in the event that a serious case is discovered that could compromise the good image of the company, it must communicate what is happening in a natural and clear way, being the first to talk about the problem and the solutions that are being carried out.