document compliance (thodonal88/Shutterstock.com)

INDUSTRY INSIGHT

Future-proofing compliance

The public sector has been slow to embrace the digital revolution. By failing to modernize compliance processes, agencies risk losing the public’s trust. Public organizations have higher compliance requirements than most private companies -- specifically around documentation, data management and record-keeping. These processes are all vital for upholding the public’s trust in state-funded organizations and activities.

Government leaders acknowledge the importance and difficulty of the challenge. In a Gartner survey, digital transformation ranked as the top business priority of government CIOs, followed closely by compliance concerns.

Compliance is a complex system

Government operates on a grand scale with widely distributed digital assets. From military and police to infrastructure and education, each agency is responsible for a large number of documents, letters, reports and presentations that must comply with specific standards covering brand guidelines, logos and legal terms.

The introduction of new technology creates its own set of compliance challenges. As agencies migrate beyond their legacy platforms to the cloud, they must ensure legal documents, templates and logos are only accessible to employees who require that access. But mistakes can happen when these assets are spread across a diverse ecosystem of servers, drives and inboxes.

It’s time for an update

Legacy compliance software is struggling to keep pace with the workforce as public-sector employees migrate tasks to the cloud, mobile devices and other on-the-go technologies. If agencies want to attract and retain top talent, they cannot be dinosaurs when it comes to technology. Yet too often, the existing technology employees use to ensure compliance makes their jobs more difficult. Instead, it should empower them and make compliance the path of least resistance -- working for them, not against them.

Standards such as HIPAA and ISO 9001 have highly specific rules on who can handle information and documentation. And the launch of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union comes with strict regulations protecting the personal information of individuals and their control over their data. With privacy regulations constantly evolving and changing, ensuring secure, controlled access will become increasingly important in order to avoid fines and penalties.

Compliance software should automate processing of routine documents, govern information disclaimers and control access to assets and templates. This great responsibility is often riding on an outdated, legacy system.

A future-proof tool

Public sector employees require a future-proof solution for legacy compliance software issues. It must make cloud transitions simple, streamline the use and administration of templates and digital assets across all government entities and add more value to the way public-sector employees work.

Digital asset management systems make compliance and gated access simple. Modern platforms use a centrally managed document template and content system that allows marketing and branding teams to maintain, update and distribute approved content across branches. There’s no need for users to leave the platform to search for content or document templates, maximizing productivity and ensuring full compliance.

Advanced compliance software ensures a connected ecosystem of information that equips staff with the most current versions of document templates, disclaimers and logos. The technology automatically formats documents and emails with the correct fonts, style conventions and legal disclaimers -- taking the guesswork out of compliance.

It can also notify employees across all departments and offices if any assets contain inconsistent fonts, color themes or logos. Document creation is a much simpler process, and automation enables employees to spend their time on higher value tasks rather than searching for or creating compliant assets.

Documentation is core to compliance

Digital transformation adds value to public-sector employee productivity, streamlines compliance burdens and ultimately improves public services, but with high-stakes information and sensitive documents on the line, compliance must be carefully considered during the transition -- and a template management tool can provide a solution. If end users can easily use the most up-to-date compliance documentation and document elements, the public body benefits from greater productivity.

About the Author

Christian Lund is the co-founder of Templafy.

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