… to monitor and track audit outcomes.
Being a Compliance Officer is a tough job, but one which places you in a privileged position in the hierarchy of your business. Ideally your knowledge and influence will span every facet of the organisation.
The purpose of today’s article is help compliance officers, and the entire management team understand the value of, and how to, monitor and track audit outcomes. This is important to raise your profile and that of the compliance function, one of the most important things you can do is make data visible.
Compliance data is in effect, your report card as the compliance officer, and the mirror in which you display the results of your efforts with all important transparency.
A dashboard is the central showpiece, where you can display charts, reports, and statistics to your top management and people within the business. The whole organisation can get behind a drive for better compliance if they can see tangible results of their efforts. The converse is also true: no one likes the visibility of poor results and this promotes increased attention on improvement.
Dividing your dashboard into the following sections will enable stakeholders to focus on particular aspects of interest:
- Audit activities – Quantity of audits of various types, audit efficiency, breakdown into audit statuses, volume trends.
- Audit Results – Drill down charts of audit results across different audit types and business units, with scored results allowing trends over time.
- Improvement activities – The volume of issues identified, appropriately categorized, showing trends and areas of significant concern. Add charts on the volume of unresolved issues, closure rates, duration and of course, the sites or locations where attention should be focused.
- Risk activities – Tthis is in effect, a dynamic risk register, providing an interactive, drill-down view of risk exposure into categories, regions, business and individual locations or projects, along with trending on recent risk assessments, control implementation and residual risk.
- Benchmarking – Provide the ability to benchmark selectable locations or groups against each other or the organization as a whole, and the ability to compare auditors in terms of output, efficiency, issue identification, and audit results.
- Administrative – Here you can provide visibility of trends of user activity like logins, login duration, active and inactive users and other administrative metrics.
The more interactive you can make your dashboard, the more useful people will find it. On your dashboard, you could provide opportunities for users to drill down into various charts, or dynamically filter charts to display results for various business divisions, regions, compliance issues, etc. Another innovation would be to display charts only for the parts of the business you make visible to individual users. Why not provide a range of reports and activity summaries for individuals to download?
Management can also be “graded” by the dashboard report card, because the dashboard will display, among other things, overall audit results, the number of raised vs resolved corrective actions, the time taken to resolve them, and so on. When you look at these over time, they will correlate closely with management’s commitment to the program.
Just as the dashboard will highlight areas of celebration or “top marks” it can be used to alert you to areas needing improvement or “further study.”
The vital task of the dashboard is that it must be regarded as the compliance pulse of the business. Data must be closely monitored in order for everyone in the business to feel motivated to participate in compliance.
The end goal of course, is to have all on board with compliance rather than bored by compliance. The dashboard will assist you in achieving this goal.