Your company faces unique compliance risks depending on your industry and size, but some risks are universal.
Inc. Magazine recently covered four major compliance risks companies of all sizes must be prepared to address this year.
Here’s a summary of what they are and how your company can protect itself.
1. Healthcare Reform
The Affordable Care Act continues to pose compliance questions for all employers.
Additional reforms taking effect this year include new rules on flexible spending contributions, additional incentives to promote workplace wellness programs and new rules on how employers should apply the 90-day waiting period for health coverage for new employees.
There are also new requirements for reporting information if you are an insurer, a self-insuring employer or another party providing health coverage.
Bottom line: Take time to review your company’s healthcare policies with someone who understands the implications of the ACA.
2. Data and Privacy Protection in Technology
After a series of high-profile data breaches last year, data security remains a major concern in 2015. Some companies, including health insurer Anthem, have already experienced breaches that impacted millions of customers.
Bottom line: Data security is more than just an IT issue. If you don’t have a professional with specific expertise in cybersecurity and data compliance on staff, it’s time to consider hiring someone.
3. Financial Regulations
The Dodd-Frank Act continues to complicate regulatory matters for all companies, not only those in the financial sector. Corporate responsibility provisions under the act apply to companies of all sizes, and investors at private companies are increasingly urging leaders to enact them.
Enhanced whistleblower requirements also promise lucrative payouts for employees who report bribes or regulatory violations that result in penalties.
Bottom line: Your company needs to have the proper channels in place to receive, respond to and investigate whistleblower complaints. Employees also need to be educated on what constitutes a violation and how to report it.
4. Third-Party Anti-Corruption Compliance
If you’re a small to mid-sized company doing business with a large global corporation, that corporation has every right to ask for your code of ethics and compliance—even if you thought you didn’t need one.
As the U.S. Department of Justice continues to hold companies accountable when their third-party vendors engage in corrupt acts, global businesses are becoming more proactive about managing compliance risks from third parties.
Bottom line: Examine your ethics and compliance policies. How do they compare to the policies of others in your industry? Do they address violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act? Do you have the means to enforce them?
Managing compliance risks starts with hiring the right people, including a proactive Chief Compliance Officer who is well-versed in each of these areas.
If you’re planning to hire compliance officers this year to guard your company against these risks, you need to ask the right questions to ensure you find a highly qualified individual. Working with an experienced compliance recruiting firm can help.
For practical advice on assessing compliance candidates, including specific interview questions, download our guide, “8 Ways to Effectively Evaluate Legal and Compliance Candidates.”