The impact of advanced technologies and changing customer behaviors has major impacts to compliance. To succeed in this changing ecosystem, however, compliance functions will need to develop new ways to monitor the new business models—and technology can help make that happen. Last week, I shared with you two key findings from our latest Accenture Compliance Risk Study. Today, I’ll conclude my series by looking at how compliance officers can stay relevant and continue to add value to their businesses. This will allow them to be the disruptor—not the disrupted—the two remaining themes uncovered in our study.
Creating and maintaining relevance and value are critical to the compliance function
To remain forward thinking, compliance must ensure its relevance. Our study finds that prioritizing predictive capabilities, developing partnerships with industry peers, cultivating a talented workforce and maintaining discipline will help drive the function forward.
More than half of survey respondents agree, indicating that skills to deliver effective management reporting will be a priority within the next year, and a similar proportion say external competitive hiring can be the best way to add those skills. Compliance officers who are comfortable working with the latest technologies will be sought after to deliver a “rational” compliance response to emerging challenges.
Along with technical skills, compliance functions seek to understand, reward and deliver a culture of ethical behavior. In fact, four out of five survey respondents agree that compliance will be the pre-eminent group in the bank for ethnical and cultural change within financial services.
Be the disruptor, not the disrupted
The expectations of compliance have never been higher, and the role of the compliance officer has never been more central to the ongoing health of the financial services industry. Some 80 percent of respondents agree that the compliance function’s ability to predict and avoid reputation and financial crime events can be a driver of competitive advantage for banks. Bold actions are needed to ensure compliance secures its place as a strategic and a positive disruptive force.
Compliance can’t solve for every emerging risk, so officers should acquire skills that help influence cultural and ethical change, thus encouraging self-correcting and self-policing behaviors. This will enable compliance to begin to use its “seat at the table” for positive disruption.
At a time when regulatory and consumer trust in financial services remains low, the compliance function can play a powerful role in influencing and transforming the industry. Now is the time for firms to take a deep look at how they can enhance the value, relevance and role of compliance.
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