Dealing with a Surge of New Regulations? Here are 5 Tips to Get Ahead
Published: January 15, 2018 | Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn
Rules, regulations, laws, statutes, mandates, codes – whatever name they go by, legal structures such as these are facts of life for businesses worldwide. Organizations who develop efficient systems for responding will benefit in many ways. They minimize the risk of noncompliance, protect the organization’s reputation, increase consumer trust and loyalty, and may even realize a competitive advantage.
Regulations and laws form the basis of an ordered society. But they also add to the cost and complexity of doing business. If your attraction serves international guests – which most do – the requirements for compliance become exponentially more challenging.
Common Regulatory Focuses
Identity information (or PII – Personally Identifiable Information) is the focus of many new regulations, but PII is only one category of compliance your organization will need to navigate.
Among Gateway’s customer community, common areas impacted by changing regulations are these:
- Data Security & Privacy
- Value Added, Goods & Sales Taxes
- Reporting & Accounting
GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation), which addresses the collection, processing, and storage of personal data, takes effect 25 May 2018 in the European Union. The UAE is scheduled to enact a VAT (value added tax) beginning in 2018. Globally, new reporting and accounting regulations are announced with regularity.
In this article, we discuss general best practices to help you stay ahead of this regulatory surge. In later articles, we will delve into specific examples of the varying types of regulations and investigate how our customers prepare for and enact compliant business practices.
Identifying the correct action can be simple when the problem is clear. But a typical challenge relating to new regulations is the high level of ambiguity surrounding the requirements and steps for compliance. We begin hearing partial details far in advance of enactment. And when the final documents are officially released, they are often long, full of complex terminology, and open to some degree of interpretation.
Uncertainty, however, cannot be a cause for inaction. The risk is too high. For example, fines for organizations in breach of GDPR can be the greater of up to 4% of annual global turnover or €20 Million.
But action has a cost, too – the time invested by your team; experts enlisted to advise; changes, additions, or even replacement of key software systems. It all adds up.
Education, Proactivity and Planning
So how should an organization proceed in the face of this uncertainty?
Here are five tips for keeping up with – and maybe even getting ahead of – the surge of regulations headed for your organization:
- Be aware and alert. Pay attention to news outlets, industry publications, trade organizations and other accurate sources of information. Keep a watch for regulations with the potential to impact your organization. Make sure to consider local, regional, and global regulations.
- Don’t delay. Even though the details may not yet be clear, begin planning your compliance effort as early as possible.
- But don’t jump too fast, either. Advance notice often comes with a timeline or deadline for implementation. Proactivity is desirable – but use the extra time to research, assess, consult and strategize. Look before you leap.
- Get the right people involved. Identify the areas of your business that are impacted by the new regulations – even those that are tangentially involved. Check – then double check – that you involve all key stakeholders and subject matter experts.
- Don’t go it alone. In some cases, you will need to consult an expert. Current business partners and industry associations can often provide consulting expertise, expert referrals and other helpful resources.
Facts of Life
The need to deal with changing regulations and laws is fait accompli for businesses worldwide – and will remain so as long as human civilization continues to exist. While new regulations and laws bring with them challenges and costs, organizations who respond effectively will position themselves for success when the implementation deadline finally arrives.