Ah, compliance regulations. As a business owner, you’ve heard of them. And likely had a heck of a time trying to maintain them.
Mishandling of records, breached networks, lost or stolen devices, or insurance coverage that expires can all result in a compliance violation. Fines for these infractions can range from $100 to $50,000 each, capping out at $1,500,000 per category, per year. That’s no small chunk of change.
That being said, it’s not easy to maintain compliance. Let alone keep up with the ever-changing regulations. New standards are frequently being implemented, and with the constant evolution of technology, that’s not going to change anytime soon.
To help, we put together a list of ways you and your team can stay up-to-date on the latest compliance standards.
While tedious at times, one way to stay current on compliance regulations is some good, old-fashioned research. Check sites that post updates on compliance standards (OSHA, NFIB, U.S. Department of Labor, HIPAA Journal, etc.). Or, do a search in Google’s news section on a weekly basis to get a jump on anything applicable to your business processes.
Enroll in Newsletters
Subscribe to newsletters and email updates from local legislators, law firms, regulatory bodies, etc. Whenever a new regulation arises, these resources will likely have up-to-date information on how that applies to your business, including requirements and deadlines for its application.
Compliance Training, Seminars, and Conferences
Plan on attending regular training, seminars, and conferences regarding compliance. Here, you’ll learn about new standards and how they must be implemented. When you’re unable to attend these events, reading summaries of them prepared by professionals is helpful.
Use a GRC Software
A good GRC (Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance) software will help your business maintain international, federal, and state compliance standards. You’ll need to coordinate information between multiple departments in your business, which takes time. But, being able to have all of your company’s compliance information in one place makes it much easier to track. Additionally, any GRC software worth its salt will integrate regulatory updates with industry news and notify you of any mandatory changes within a day of an official regulation change.
Appoint a Compliance Officer
Hire or designate an existing employee to be in charge of your company’s compliance operations. Send this person to regular training, seminars, and conferences. This ensures they remain well-versed in the regulations required in your industry.
Hire A Compliance Expert
If you want an expert opinion or simply don’t have the time to devote to keeping up with ever-changing regulations in-house, don’t hesitate to hire a compliance consultant. This option will likely be the most costly. But, the peace of mind you get knowing your business compliance is in the hands of an industry specialist is priceless.
Failure to maintain compliance can lead to reputational loss, fines, mandatory external audits, and even legal action (for a more in-depth look at these consequences, click here). Thankfully, staying up to date on the current compliance standards will help you avoid all of these headaches.
It’s our goal to help your business navigate the tricky waters of maintaining compliance. If you have any further questions on how to do so within your business, please reach out. We’d be happy to set up a time to discuss the best way for your company to do avoid fines and protect its sensitive data.