The idea of missing a reporting deadline weighs heavily on compliance managers’ minds. With regulations and requirements stacking up every day, it is not uncommon for details (even ones as important as deadlines) to slip through the cracks. Acting as a compliance manager requires an amount of certainty that all the organization’s compliance needs are being fulfilled. Deploying compliance management software removes the guesswork, enabling managers to set up a customized compliance registry with easily traceable data that holistically addresses needs specific to the organization. Robust, customizable legal compliance software provides the flexibility, reliability, and speed to organize, track, and present mission-critical data more efficiently.
The Top 4 Reasons to Invest in EH&S Compliance Software
1. Regulatory Compliance
Compliance deadlines are not always straightforward. Utilizing out-of-the-box software to manage compliance details can lead to oversight of changing schedules and wasted time. A lapse could mean losing the license to operate critical infrastructure, resulting in production loss and supply bottlenecks that can significantly deplete an organization’s profits and reputation.
2. Achieving Standardization
Most multinational organizations and industry leaders incorporate internationally recognized best practices. Organizations that are ISO certified must comply with international standard requirements to maintain their certifications. Management systems standards that EH&S compliance managers are commonly responsible for include ISO 9001 for quality management, ISO 14001 for environmental management, and/or ISO 45001 for occupational health and safety management. These standards require the categorical organization of the related records, procedures, and data.
3. Staffing Changes
In this time of increased personnel changes, organizations need to protect themselves against the resultant potential of critical information being lost and deadlines being missed. ISO management systems promote protecting against this possibility by relying on systems rather than individuals. Implementing a compliance software solution supports this by keeping the organizational data secure and processes automated.
4. Central Repository Maintenance
Having key features that streamline processes (such as auto-escalation, notification scheduling, secure sign-on links, digital forms, etc.) makes following up on action plans simple. Utilizing a generic virtual calendar to track inspection dates and other compliance details can result in confusion over the inclusion of other business notifications and meetings and more work for compliance managers as they must use extra tools to access compliance data.
Now that the reasons behind investing in compliance management software have been established, it is important to recognize what features should be included in an organization’s choice software. The following 5 features can be extremely beneficial for standardizing and automating compliance:
- Data Reliability
- Follow-up and Escalation
Multinational corporations that must submit sustainability reports can benefit from EH&S compliance software for logging and tracking KPI usage metrics such as carbon emissions, wastewater discharge, and water consumption. Multi-site locations can present a challenge when handling these details (especially if this involves various jurisdictions with separate legislative requirements.) Missing just one reporting deadline can mean hefty fines or the suspension of operating licenses. EH&S software that includes customizable templates to maintain data according to different legislating bodies is extremely helpful in this regard. Additionally, cutting-edge compliance software stores data in a central repository, enabling swift, secure access to address any regulatory inspection or external audit.
Intelligent search functionality enables users to scan through vast amounts of data and find the right results quickly. The ability to save oft-repeated searches (with commonly used categories such as date, priority, assigned user, department, etc.) allows even more control and speed in reporting. When documents are digitized and there is the ability to add comments this provides greater context for users needing to look back on previous data and reports, empowering employees to handle dated action items more accurately.
Data managed within the system should be handled with secured servers. Data redundancy checks complete system back-ups at set intervals, giving managers peace of mind that the data will be available when it is needed.
EH&S compliance software should allow users to prioritize tasks. This functionality helps compliance managers clear up clutter and better organize data, improving productivity. Every stakeholder can receive periodic reminders of action points in order of importance to maintain accountability.
Follow-up and Escalation:
Following up on action items until closure can be needlessly repetitive and time intensive for compliance managers. EH&S compliance software serves as a digital assistant, making missed deadline reminders a thing of the past. Furthermore, automatic and escalated notifications improve organizational transparency, accountability, and authority. It allows users to more easily encourage appropriate participation in compliance processes.
To be completely certain nothing goes wrong, a compliance manager must have better control of organizational compliance needs. Compliance software supports this effort, allowing users to make the best use of their time by eliminating delays from excessive administrative tasks. When compliance data is handled from a secure, centralized information repository and the automation of processes is introduced, legal compliance is much more attainable.
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