What is a Compliance Management System?
A compliance management system, sometimes shortened to a CMS, will be used by an organisation to understand, and manage its compliance responsibilities.
In simple terms, a compliance management system will help an organisation manage and track all the relevant internal policies, procedures, checks and activities that a business is required to carry out in order to maintain legal and regulatory obligations.
A CMS is potentially more important than ever now, according to Thomas Reuters, with 70% of risk and compliance experts admitting that the Covid-19 pandemic has increased their reliance on tech solutions to aid crucial aspects of compliance management.
What is compliance in a business organisation setting?
Take a minute and consider all the policies, procedures, checks, and monitoring required within your workplace.
Every business will operate within the frameworks and structures of their core industry. Construction companies will have to implement various safety and insurance protocols, as will manufacturers, food suppliers, ports & harbour’s, local councils, community & voluntary groups and more.
Government Guidelines, Regulations, Laws and Restrictions.
Much like general industry compliance, every business and organisation are also subject to the government guidelines, regulations, laws, and restrictions within which they operate.
Every organisation will have to abide by standard Health and Safety Executive (HSE) legislation and ensure each and every asset complies with this legislation. We consistently support clients operating within industry and agency protocols to include Port Marine Safety Code, The British Retail Consortium, the Food Standards Agency, the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO), and countless others.
We understand how quickly various guidelines, legislation, protocols and safety mechanisms can start to stack up, and this can become a massive issue for organisations if not managed properly.
So what does a compliance management system (CMS) actually do and how can it help your business?
Proactive Triggers and Warnings
In our experience in working with organisations, the most common issue faced by organisations is not that they don’t have systems in place to help them manage their compliance obligations, it’s that the systems they have in place fail them.
Paper documents and Excel spreadsheets are great for recording information to a point, and as your organisation grows the increase in activity becomes too great to manage with the use of paper and excel.
The reliance on paper work order forms, email, phone call, notice boards and text message to inform of every required activity leaves us wide open for human error and subsequently nonconformance. Important flags cannot be set to alert staff when certain triggers or warnings have been set off (e.g. a planned safety check or upcoming certificate expiry).
Despite the best intentions of staff, crucial dates can be missed and unfortunately this can have all kinds of risk related ramifications.
Managed all within One Location
Another key benefit of a compliance management system (CMS) is that it will help centralise important information within your organisations.
Having multiple unconnected information sources, spread across an organisations workplace in different formats such as paper documents stored in filing cabinets, spreadsheets, Google Docs and more is not conducive to efficient working practices and high levels of productivity.
Locating critical information for reporting and audit purposes can be a drawn out and time-consuming process that can be stressful on individuals tasked with the activity.
Aides Auditing and Reporting
We regularly work with clients who struggle with the reporting expectations placed upon them.
Alongside their day-to-day workload, staff can be required to produce relevant and up-to-date reports at the drop of a hat, with increasing regularity. This can become a massive headache if the required information isn’t readily at hand.
A good CMS will help store and manage all the relevant information such as H&S certificates, work orders, H&S Inspections, Incidents & Accident reporting, in one place so that reporting and proof of conformance can be carried out at the touch of a button.
IEB Software have been helping many organisations across multiple industries, effectively manage compliance of all their assets with our purpose-built asset compliance management system AssetHQ.
Across countless businesses, ports & harbours, councils, manufacturers and more, AssetHQ is making the workday for many a more efficient and productive one.
Giving organisations the confidence to be audit ready every day AssetHQ enables teams to manage compliance related activity more efficiently, and quickly prove compliance to make every audit a stress-free process.