Compliance and ethics programs have methodologies that could be used in other areas of business. We encourage people to handle specific issues consistently each time, as often as possible to help follow the rule of law and ensure fairness and ethical behavior. A good example is a travel policy. There are other very good reasons to be constant and have policies than to follow the rule of law and behave ethically. Policies, procedures, and systems generate business efficiencies. Having no policy or having excessive exceptions to policies, create huge inefficiencies.
We process hundreds of speaker travel expense forms each year. We are very consistent in the way we reimburse. We can be a pain in the neck for those who are used to having some sort of special treatment or exception. We do make exceptions, but they are rare and it is often related to a problem or unique situation that occurred as opposed to someone being special. We don’t hold the line just because it’s ethical or compliant; we also hold the line because it saves us a lot of time. If you follow a policy, things proceed in a smooth and efficient manner. If you make an exception, people in the office have to stop what they are doing and talk about the exception. Then they have to communicate the exception to people in operations and they in turn have to stop what they are doing and handle the exception. Exceptions are more prone to errors and that causes more time to be spent to help one person. Sometimes we have to involve even more people because we have to look back at how we handled exceptions like this in the past. IT’S A HORRIBLE WAY to run a business.
If we were not consistent we would be become the National Association of Constantly Meeting and Talking About How to Handle a Simple Issue For One Person, rather than the National Association of Cranking Out More Beneficial Things For The Compliance Profession Than Anyone Else or the NACOMBTFTCPTAE. People working on your exception are not working to help many people. They are working on something to help one person. The return on investment of time and effort is almost zero, in fact it is probably a negative ROI. Many associations turn into good old boys clubs. One of the core beliefs of a good old boys clubs is to create as much inefficiency as possible because they are constantly trying to figure out what to do on a person-by-person basis. It’s insanely inefficient.Systems, Policies, and Procedures Help Create Business EfficienciesClick To Tweet