Simplifying GRC (February 2014) – the benefits of applying a technological solution to the GRC functions.

‘Simply the Best, Saluting the Australian Not-for-profit Sector’ (ACI News July 2013)

February 2013 Compliance Essentials featured in Business West magazine (issue #23)

May 2012 we were delighted to be interviewed by John Millar, More Profit Less Time as part of the Business Leaders series.  Follow the link to find out more about what we can offer to your business

Compliance Essentials’s presentation for the Vic chapter of CIMA (26 April 2012) is available on the CIMA website

On 27 October 2011 we were privileged to hold a cocktail hour at the amazing B24 Liberator Restoration site.  Friends and guests came along to join us in an evening of networking and relaxing chat.  Check out the B24 Liberator in these great pics! Compliance Essentials’ Cocktail Party 27 October 2011Work can be fun – some of the guests and friends of Compliance Essentials!

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‘Saluting the Australian Not-for-profit Sector’ published in ACI-GRC e-news July 2013

Compliance Essentials A Healthy Corporate Mind (published ‘Business Excellence’ Autumn 2011)

Compliance Essentials Fit for Purpose (published ‘Business Excellence’ Winter 2011)

Australian Ageing Agenda

Making a Friend of Compliance

Author: Gillian Kinder
Published: VECCI “Business Excellence”  Spring 2010/”Business Excellence” e-mag

There has recently been talk in the media showcasing organisations that have fallen short on their compliance obligations, indeed non-compliance stories are taken up by the press as modern day sensationalism. We hear about the misdemeanours and the punitive effect on the organisation concerned and often its officers; however talking about the way things should have been is not within the realms of popular journalism.

The word compliance tends to sit with some business organisations as something of a black dog – I have to ask why that is. In everyday life most people practise compliance as part of their normal activities – we try to obey traffic rules, don’t engage in theft, generally endeavour not to break the law, take steps to protect our reputation. What’s the difference? Being a good citizen doesn’t carry a ‘threatening’ label, for most of us it is what we do and how we behave to get along in life with a minimum of drama.

So what steers an organisation through its life? As an abstract, an entity has to rely on the wherewithal of its directors and management to guide operations through the minefield of legal and regulatory obligations, and sadly in practice this does not always happen, more sadly some entities may not be compliant from management ignorance of the law or regulatory requirements. The broad brush definition of compliance is a concept that applies not only to high level listed and regulated organisations; call it what you will, compliance is a need for every organisation to enable it to conduct its daily life in the most effective way possible, minimising exposure to investigations (and penalties that may attach), mitigating risk exposure, as well as increasing efficiencies and, a high ranking need, increasing customer service.

As a basic analysis, compliance has two strands; a generic element in relation to legal and regulatory obligations – for example direct and indirect taxation, statutory reporting, human resources, general OH&S, fulfilling contractual obligations – and organisation specific elements of a statutory and regulatory nature depending on industry and organisational type and structure.

Implementing good governance, of which compliance is a part, is a way to make the rules and regulations work with and to work for your organisation.

How is this achieved? First and foremost by documenting compliance requirements and testing the organisational fit at each step. Making the plan – where level of complexity is proportional to the complexity of the organisation – and allocating resources to analyse compliance obligations may be time consuming (and may be perceived as a stress on resources), but your organisation is worth it. (Compare this effort to that involved in responding to outside investigation, not to mention meeting financial and other penalties that may attach for non-compliance.) Reviewing the commitment to statutory and regulatory obligations affords the opportunity to take a realistic and practical view of the functionality of every area of organisational activity and no commercial business or not-for-profit organisation is too big or too small to engage in this exercise. Taking stock of how things are is the first step to identifying areas of risk exposure, to putting in place a strategy for continuous improvement, as well as meshing the strands of the operational and administrative functions of an organisation.

Being compliant isn’t just about knowing your obligations it is about application within the business, analysing and managing risk exposure and also about training, making staff aware of where the organisation stands in respect of its obligations and taking it to the wire when it comes to detailing staff responsibilities. A robust compliance framework is a living document that needs to be reviewed at regular intervals, monitored and become a part of business strategic planning; a value adding tool.

Already in 2010 we have seen several legislative changes, including Fair Work Australia, and looking not far ahead, at least intended are changes to the current Trade Practices Act as well as the inception of the Model Work Health & Safety legislation. Stay with the game and make compliance your organisation’s best friend.

Gillian Kinder FCIS, MCom.Law is Director of Compliance Essentials Pty Ltd