There are many different areas to consider when defining the role of a compliance officer in your organization.
These will differ depending on the industry, area, and size of the company. But here are a few common areas of compliance:
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) creates and enforces standards for workplace safety. Your organization must comply with the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and all other relevant laws.
Under OSH, employers are required to “provide a workplace free from serious recognized hazards.” This includes:
- Performing regular safety checks and equipment maintenance.
- Providing training in a language employees will understand.
- Keeping records of work-related injuries.
- Informing employees of their rights and responsibilities.
You can find a full list of laws and standards on the OSHA website.
While there is no comprehensive federal law governing data security, there are many general communications laws that apply to data and personal information.
These include laws such as HIPAA, the Fair Credit Reporting Act, and the Federal Trade Commission Act.
Many states also have laws governing data disposal and security. Your security officer should make sure that your organization is in compliance with all data security regulations and standards.
Human resources cover some of the most important areas of compliance. It is essential to ensure that your organization is in compliance with laws covering areas such as discrimination, harassment, employee benefits, and overtime pay.
Noncompliance with laws and standards in these areas can result in serious legal ramifications.
IT compliance includes processes for complying with laws governing data security. But it also includes internal policies that cover technology and electronic communication.
IT policies should specify who has access to sensitive company data and information. They should include how the organization will monitor things such as technology use and email communication.
IT compliance can help prevent computer hacks and harmful viruses, protect information, and ensure that employees aren’t using company devices or servers to access or download illegal content.
Financial compliance covers everything from payroll to taxes to financial disclosures.
While non-compliance in other areas can lead to legal trouble, failure to pay your taxes can result in the government shutting down your organization. It’s important for your organization to be transparent with finances and ensure compliance with all federal and state laws in this area.
So, what does compliance mean for your organization?
It’s essential for your organization to make sure all your operations follow laws, regulations, and standards for your industry. A dedicated officer or department can help identify potential risks and create a plan for compliance.
Policies, procedures, and accurate records are an important part of ensuring and demonstrating compliance in key areas.
As you seek to achieve the highest level of compliance, make sure to regularly review and update your policies, thoroughly train staff, and conduct risk assessments and audits.