August 28, 2020SAFETY AND INSPECTIONS
How To Choose The Best Compliance Software for Your Company
Failing to comply with regulatory requirements is no laughing matter. One serious OSHA violation could earn a maximum penalty of $13,260. And a “willful or repeat” violation could set your company back $132,598.
Compliance requires following a wide range of standards designed to protect a company’s agents, employees, and stakeholders from harm. How can you feel certain your organization has complied with all local, state, federal, and industry regulatory requirements?
Adopt compliance tracking software that is easy enough for the whole team to master without intensive training! Modern compliance software provides management with the tools to create recurring work orders, automated workflows, design customized checklists, and avoid legal entanglements with digital audit trails.
Organizations within the manufacturing, medical, hospitality, and construction industries will find compliance software particularly useful for staying on top of lengthy regulatory requirements. In this article, we’ll outline seven important questions worth asking when evaluating compliance software options:
7 Questions to Ask When Choosing Compliance Software
Whichever industry regulation and business process you are seeking a compliance solution for, these are the most important questions to ask yourself when evaluating compliance software options:
1. What compliance specifications do we need?
The best compliance software is that which:
a). meets all of your company’s needs and
b). actually gets used by your staff!
The compliance management software that may work for one organization might not work for all. Depending on your type of business, you may be responsible for following audit-ready safety policies issued by local, state, federal, and industry groups. Begin your search by writing down all of your regulatory compliance challenges and the specific regulations your organization needs to follow to reduce risk.
Once you have documented the functionalities you need, you’re ready to begin evaluating management solutions. When it comes to compliance apps, both generic and industry-specific solutions are available. While the latter will be the obvious choice in many cases, don’t overlook versatile applications that might provide a more user-friendly experience. Modern, cloud-based software programs often come with API integrations that allow users to share data with other management systems.
For example, if your operation works with IoT sensors, API integration with your compliance software can trigger corrective actions when appropriate.
2. Does it generate data-driven reports?
Manual reporting is not only time-consuming but also error-prone. Error-prone compliance reporting can harm business operations and profitability. Similarly, compliance software should provide your company with top-notch reporting solutions that leave nothing to chance.
3. Can we easily create and modify user accounts?
Over the years, employees will come and go. Prioritize software that makes it easy to onboard new members of your team while cleaning up inactive users. Navigating user accounts should be easy, intuitive, and straightforward. User permissions are also important considerations to ensure information is kept confidential.
4. Can we upload photos and documents?
We’ve come a long way from location-based servers requiring colossal storage rooms, manual updates, and preventive maintenance. Approximately 90 percent of companies today use cloud storage.
Of course, sharing remote servers amongst clients allows software providers to offer affordable monthly user plans. However, scalability isn’t the only benefit of cloud storage. It will enable users to upload relevant company documents, policies, and announcements in one centralized place that can quickly be accessed by employees—anywhere with an internet connection in real-time. When it comes to managing compliance instructions, it’s important to ensure everyone is on the same page.
5. Will our data be secure?
Data integrity is more crucial than ever before. In 2019, The United States of America reported 1.4 billion data breaches. Upper management must take the necessary precautions to safeguard their companies against cyber-attacks and prevent the leakage of proprietary, confidential, and sensitive information.
Find out if your desired compliance software provider takes proper security measures taken to protect your data against breaches. Some of the questions to ask with regards to security include:
- Does the app share data with a third-party?
- What kind of data encryption does it use?
- Does the app follow industry best practices?
Surprisingly, not all software providers prioritize data protection. Some of them may even sell your data to third-party companies. This is especially important if you are monitoring HIPAA compliance.
6. Is the software smartphone-friendly?
As reported in the App Attention Index 2017, 60 percent of users have deleted an app after encountering performance problems. Two-thirds of mobile users say they will uninstall an app after the first use if it doesn’t meet their expectations.
You can avoid poor software adoption by selecting a platform that is designed for mobile users first. The best options will include both desktop, tablet, and mobile interface options. Considering that nearly every employee already owns a smartphone, and is comfortable using popular apps, it makes sense to choose compliance software that provides a familiar user experience.
7. Is this compliance software scalable?
Can the software grow with you? As a company, the flexibility of any technology you adopt is crucial. Otherwise, you may end up sourcing new software every time your organization reaches another level of success. Ensure compliance with audit management tools that are as easy to use as social media tools for your team – safety and quality depend on proper controls management.
Also, how flexible are the pricing plans offered? Is the fee based on the number of users? What are the limits of each subscription plan? Have you discussed the budget with your management team? These are essential questions to find the answers to before committing to a package.
Choosing The Best Compliance Software
It’s not rocket science—good compliance software makes it easier for organizations to meet regulatory requirements. As we’ve demonstrated, choosing the right software is paramount to running a successful compliance program (and avoiding costly fines).
However, partnering with a vendor that understands your unique needs is equally as important. When evaluating software providers, look into their use cases to determine how experienced they are in providing software solutions for your specific niche. MaintainX has hundreds of happy customers within the power plant, manufacturing, facilities management, food service, education, and hospitality industries. Want to know if our compliance app would work for your organization? Click here to get in touch.