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Non-Compliance: Why Your Policies and Procedures May Be the Culprit

Non-Compliance: Why Your Policies and Procedures May Be the Culprit
Keeping employees compliant with regulations is a huge challenge for many of our customers. Every time they turn around, it seems there is a new law or new regulation they have to implement and get their workforce trained on. The compliance problem is only going to get worse with all the pressure now for increased regulation from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and other agencies.

In our work with companies across all industries, we’ve had a chance to review hundreds of policies and procedures. What we’ve found is that most policies and procedures guides aren’t even getting close to supporting compliance. 

In one case, the policy and procedure manual itself was the non-compliance culprit. Although it was probably unintentional, we see many instances of conflicting policies and procedures. No wonder employees are non-compliant, and corporate training departments face a daunting challenge.

It’s also no wonder companies tell us they have trouble getting their board members, management, and employees to use their official policies and procedures. Many times they find themselves signing off on policy and procedure information they don’t even understand. Board-approved procedures don't necessarily mean they are right.

Employees simply don’t have the time or the inclination to sort through massive quantities of confusing text and try to figure out what it means and what you want them to do.

Many companies think that just throwing better search or content management technology at the problem will make it go away. Others think testing is the answer. But neither of those things will fix the core problem–bad content.

If you want to reduce non-compliance risk once and for all, do yourself a favor and provide everyone with clear boundaries and good directions. Start applying best practices for writing policies and procedures that get results.

Zavanta Software Can Help

Linking policy documents with processes, procedures, work instructions, and other support documents is crucial for compliance and auditors (e.g., SOC2, ISO 27001, CMMC, FedRAMP, etc.) By directly linking these documents to each other, employees can understand the whole picture, from the decision-making through the process, procedures, and other supporting documents that eventually loop back to communication and process improvement. This is the purpose and core of Zavanta.

We find that employees are more effective in taking ownership, executing, and improving processes if they know why they do their jobs and what decisions dictate how they do them.

Linking these documents together also helps auditors easily access and understand your compliance documentation. This also paints a good picture of quality and organization for the auditor, making the audit process move efficiently. We find that auditors love the document-linking ability of Zavanta and that, in many cases, it can improve the speed of the audit process by two to three times.  

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