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4 compliance worst-case scenarios–and how to avoid them

In this post, we’ll explore common examples of compliance going awry and how you might avoid them.

Amy Kirkham
By Amy Kirkham Content Marketing Manager

The pressure of workplace compliance is high, especially for enterprises. Juggling the demands of changing regulations and different compliance standards is challenging. And more often than not, businesses get it wrong. In fact, according to a 2021 Integreon report, over 30% of organizations globally were non-compliant with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) standards last year. 

The reality is that compliance failures are common and can threaten all organizations–not just the big brands that make the news headlines. In this post, we’ll cover some of the most common scenarios that might affect compliance management in your organization. We’ll also give you some ideas and tools (visitor management solution incoming!) to prevent compliance going awry. That way, you know what to keep an eye out for and how to avoid it.

Scenario 1 – During office moves

An office manager or front desk team might unintentionally compromise your visitor management compliance. A physical move (even within the same building) leaves an opportunity for important documents to go missing if you’re using pen and paper visitor logs and NDAs. Often, the loss of visitor logs isn’t discovered until it’s too late, and an external audit reveals missing information that can’t be accounted for.

 

Scenario 2 – In natural disasters

Every region has unique environmental and weather concerns, including winter snowstorms, tornadoes, hurricanes, and earthquakes. Compliance doesn’t only apply to a workplace setting. The physical security of your data centers that process and store any company, employee, customer, and visitor data is of equal importance to the workplace.

As much as you plan for and consider how a natural weather event could impact your workplace, you need to also look into and understand the environment in which your data centers operate. What would happen if a natural disaster, like a flood, occurred? What measures are in place for that data center to ensure reliability? A data center is not only responsible for overseeing the physical security of these facilities and controlling who has access, but mitigating extraordinary events like extreme weather.

 

Scenario 3 – Due to human error

This includes but is not limited to spilling water on papers, misplacing or recycling them, and not disposing of sensitive materials in the proper way. A well-meaning employee could leave the front desk unattended, and if there are paper and pen logbooks there, anyone waiting in the reception could access or even take that information. 

 

Scenario 4 – In third party audits

A dramatic event doesn’t necessarily have to happen for you to revisit and have to make available any visitor or employee logs, documents, NDAs, and other sensitive materials. Part of your company’s commitment to information security standards is being prepared for third-party audits at any time. But there doesn’t have to be unpleasant surprises when it comes to audits. Instead of being wary of what they might find, think of these external audits as an opportunity to put your compliance policies and procedures to the test. Do the work now to avoid any unexpected issues in the future.

 

How can a workplace platform help protect your people, places, and ideas?

Workplace platforms play a crucial role in helping you to avoid the above worst-case scenarios. It is a key resource in helping organizations create or carry out corporate compliance policies. 

Starting at the front desk, these systems can track visitor and employee activity on-site, and serve as a digital log or ‘source of truth’ for everyone authorized to be in the workplace. This includes visitor management software that can:

  1. Keep and maintain meticulous visitor logs
  2. Document who your visitors came to see
  3. Keep track of who is on the WiFi network to better protect company data privacy
  4. Ensure visitors sign any mandatory legal documents such as NDAs or liability waivers
  5. Confirm when visitors leave the building

As organizations realize the value of secure visitor management, many are moving from paper and pen sign-in sheets—where personal data is vulnerable because it’s left out for anyone to see—to a digital and more secure visitor management system.

The bottom line for businesses–particularly enterprises–is to practice compliance management in every situation. Granted, it’s easier said than done. As workplace leaders, consider investing in the right technology as an important first step to ensure your organization is–and stays–compliant. 

Remember, no matter how big or small, every act of non-compliance can open you up to risk, potential damage, and hefty fines.

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Amy Kirkham
Author Bio Amy Kirkham

Amy is a content guru at Envoy, where she helps workplace leaders build a workplace their people love. Outside of work, you can usually find Amy drinking coffee, exploring new places, or planning her next trip.