As compliance departments try to map out their next steps following the vote by the U.K. to leave the European Union, they can best serve their companies by maintaining a steady hand and advocating the business doesn’t make any hasty decisions until the situation plays itself out further, said one compliance officer. “One of the most important things compliance teams can bring to their company in face of what seems to be earth-shattering information is the calm of staying the course and being prepared for change as it comes,” said Louis A. Sapirman, associate general counsel and chief compliance officer at business information provider Dun & Bradstreet.
That means compliance needs to focus on preparedness, looking at how strong the culture and risk-assessment processes are in the company’s U.K. units, and to be prepared to handle any decisions that could relocate U.K. operations, said Mr. Sapirman. For those companies that can’t or don’t want to wait for the process to play out, they need to ask where are the regulatory regimes located in which they have the most confidence, he said. From the U.K. regulatory perspective, Mr. Sapirman said the threat of businesses leaving the country is real and regulators know it. “I would expect that U.K. regulatory bodies will take whatever actions are necessary to keeping operations in the U.K. as easy as possible,” he said.
Companies looking to stay ahead of anticipated changes in existing regulations due to Brexit need quickly to adopt an agile approach to their analytics workflow. Such an approach enables analysts to quickly pull data from disparate sources and create reusable analytical assessments that are flexible and easily altered. For example, a company might build an analytic application now to ensure compliance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation, realizing that requirements will likely change over the next few years due to Brexit. Regardless of those changes, that company will have all the data it needs to provide quick answers when auditors come knocking.
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