How to build corporate transparency in a modern regulatory world

Transparency underpins good governance in the financial services industry, but it’s becoming an equally rocky foundation to maintain.  

From data overload to adapting to agile working throughout Covid-19, maintaining clarity over your individual and organisational regulatory position is increasingly complex.  

This is why worldwide investment in RegTech has more than tripled over the last five years, showing that the demands for solutions to support regulatory processes and evidence compliance is higher than ever before.  

While manual governance has been manageable to a point in the financial industry, there are various factors now highlighting the need for a more systemised solution. 

A highly fragmented market 

Solutions and approaches in financial services remain fragmented. For example, critical tasks that underpin an organisation’s entire governance performance, such as accountability mapping, are still being completed ‘on paper’. In addition, companies are dealing with highly varied business needs and individual compliance requirements in isolation.  

There needs to be a shift to more comprehensive and unified solutions if the financial services sector wants to keep compliance secured. 

Regulatory change  

The regulatory landscape is evolving. This is always somewhat true, but is now exacerbated by continued consumer distrust in the financial sector. In response to this, regulation is tightening across the globe while simultaneously putting the onus on embedded cultural change. This extends from internal to external cultures, with initiatives such as the Proposed Consumer Duty in the UK increasing focus on individual competence and behaviours in order to create a more positive consumer world in financial services. 

With regulation designed to root out tick boxing and improve sector reputation, organisations must work harder to prove themselves as accountable and low risk than ever before. 

Similarly, regulators are changing what the breadcrumb trail for accountability and liability looks like. There is more scrutiny over not just an individual’s accountability, but how this accountability travels – through company hierarchies, delegation, responsible people, and so on.  

Achieving one version of the truth has never been more important. It makes proactive risk reduction and accountability possible at all levels. For senior managers, it also provides visibility over their people compliance, performance and risk, as well as putting the power into the hands of individuals.  

By integrating documentation, digital versioning, time-based evidencing, reporting, submissions, and much more, into one central solution, accountability becomes a natural part of your workflows. 

In addition, the need to maintain pace with compliance that never settles is pushing organisations to become more agile. Paired with increasing regulatory burdens, this is only possible at scale when supported by responsive and automated technologies. The traditionally manual approach is quickly becoming inefficient and ultimately unsustainable. 

Globalisation and digitalisation 

These challenges are happening at a global level.  

The financial regulatory market has become more integrated as organisations globalise and the digital economy connects all moving parts. Yet it remains equally disparate from legislation being decided at a regional level.  

As a result, multinational organisations must adapt their policies, processes, and operations across borders. For them, a centralised solution where individual regulatory efforts across sites can be viewed, managed, and coordinated are essential. Not only does an integrated solution enable systemisation, but it would reduce risk, improve operational efficiency, and increase consistency. 

On the other hand, regulatory bodies are not coordinating in the same way. With a lack of internationally agreed standards in place, companies have been struggling to find solutions that will meet their diverse regional requirements. Therefore, despite demands to the contrary, it’s still challenging to marry these two realities and maintain clear transparency between them.  

Building a more transparent working world 

With these challenges in mind, organisations must align several demands to rebuild or improve transparency within their organisations and with their consumers. 

Firstly, they must be able to balance multiple focuses represented by individual accountability, regional regulation, and then global governance. This is an intricate web of actions and reporting levels which can only be managed with transparency if organisations can bring these factors together.  

Secondly, as showcased by the latest era of regulatory updates, the change required from organisations is more than skin deep. It’s about embedding a cultural infrastructure that drives truly people-focused accountability. Simply adopting any technology solution isn’t going to solve the ingrained industry challenges that regulators are trying to address. 

Financial organisations need to embrace digital transformation in the form of a truly centralised system to achieve operational, cultural, and individual systemisation of governance. They need to give their people the tools and the visibility to embody best practice from the ground up. As new regional regulation is released across the globe, this is the perfect time to adapt and start systemising regulation alongside a solution.  

This is how financial organisations will be empowered to build a transparent corporate workplace for their organisation, across the globe, at scale. 

A transformative individual regulatory compliance platform 

Trailight is purpose-built to address the challenges of the financial regulatory market. The automated platform empowers financial services to manage their individual accountability and people-focused compliance more efficiently, at a global scale. 

Trailight is your single source of truth, combining individual, regional, and global compliance. This central solution allows you to track, define, and engage with best practice across the board, at every level. Now, you can consolidate all things people compliance, helping you to reduce your risk and improve operational efficiency. 

Moreover, Trailight puts people and accountability at the heart of corporate governance. With this approach, you can secure the compliance of your teams and protect the people that power your business throughout global corporate structures.  

The platform is designed to meet the agility of your regulatory landscape. Capabilities can be configured to your jurisdictional, organisational, and individual compliance requirements – and can evolve as they change. This way, achieving transparency and people compliance is simpler and more scalable than ever. 

Combining these core themes, Trailight acts as more than a technology platform. It’s a solution that can support you to improve corporate culture, drive more conscious operating practices and create more transparent corporations globally.