What happens when a software upgrade involves not just a few changes to your existing compliance solution but a move to an entirely new platform? If your compliance vendor is forcing a transition to a brand new system you can expect time and money lost in revamping internal processes and getting up to speed on the technology, along with the increased risk that implementing an untested platform will bring.
Don’t feel pressured to commit to the conversion without significant thought and assessment. With large scale disruption already on the horizon, it’s an opportune time to take a look at other options in the market to see if there’s another solution that better meets your needs.
Untested technology brings risks. Understand them up front.
When your compliance system is heading off into the sunset and being replaced by your vendor with an entirely new product it presents a seismic shift for your department—and your entire organization. Migrating to a brand new software platform brings risks. What if the functionality does not work as promised, or features that are an integral part of your business are not included with the new product? What if there are many bugs to work through? Will there be enough support? Moving to a proven platform eliminates those uncertainties.
Look at your compliance requirements with fresh eyes. Do you need more?
Use the move away from your existing system as an opportunity to take a fresh look at your compliance needs. Organizational needs and the regulatory landscape are likely different than they were when you selected your current system. Having a solid understanding of your current requirements will help you and your team select the best compliance software that can meet your needs right now and support the organization’s future growth.
Any time your organization is undergoing a software transition, whether it’s an upgrade, a migration, or a change to a new provider, it’s important to have a shared understanding of the needs of your organization. It’s also important to get key stakeholders on board early in the process to insure a smooth transition. Read about getting buy-in from key stakeholders and watch the on-demand webinar Building the Case for Process Improvement & Compliance Technology Change to learn more.
Understand the full impact of the migration—and take the time to see what other options are out there.
After the new system is installed is not the time to figure out that it does not meet your needs. Don’t feel forced to make the conversion without developing a solid understanding of the new software and how it compares to the other solutions on the market. Take the time you need to assess the functionality and fit of all of your options before moving forward.
How much do you know about the new system and how it will work? Before committing to any solution, from your existing vendor or a new one, the compliance team and other stakeholders within the organization should have the opportunity to demo the system and work through use cases in a test environment. Look for the system that has the functionality that you need today, and also the functionality that you’ll need tomorrow to support both new regulatory priorities and business growth.
Is the system user friendly and easy to use, both for the compliance team and the employee end user? If employees know exactly what they need to do and it’s easy for them to do it, you’ll see increased adherence to compliance policies and procedures. Plus, the compliance team will field fewer questions from employees, freeing them up to work on other priorities. Determine if the system has a mobile app, providing an easy way for employees to stay compliant while working remote or on the go.
Are you getting comprehensive information about their systems from the providers you are talking to, or are they keeping some of the details about their solutions behind the curtain? Regulators will want to know the specifics, so make sure you know them as well. It’s also important to understand any contractual implications like increased costs or changes to licensing that the new system might bring.
Also, ask for references. If the new system has been deployed in any other organization ask to talk to them to see what their experience has been like. And ask to speak with current customers from the other systems that you are evaluating.
Download the white paper Getting IT Done - Optimize the Software Selection Process for the Best Outcome for helpful guidance on selecting compliance technology.
What about your customizations? Will you lose customizations like forms, reporting and workflows when you move over to the new system? Who will be responsible for recreating what you have lost—you or your provider? It’s also important to understand how customizations in all of the systems that you are evaluating work. Is it easy to create customizations, and can you continue to make them after the solution is deployed?
What has your support relationship been like? If you have not been receiving timely answers to your questions, it’s likely that the support team will be stretched even thinner when implementing the new system. When evaluating the support team from any provider, look for a tenured workforce with significant product and industry experience and deep system knowledge. Ask for data like turnaround times and NPS scores to help evaluate support performance.
How does the new system manage data? How does the platform identify and filter data? If required data is missing, who holds the responsibility for filling the gap? Data needs will evolve as regulations and business requirements do, so understand how each potential solution handles obtaining new data along with licensing and processing standards.
What will the implementation process look like? What is the expected impact to productivity? What’s the desupport date or your existing system? Do you have enough time to plan ahead?
How many system implementations has the team you’ll be working with handled? If the migration is being oversold as easy that can be a red flag. Change brings challenges, but a well-designed implementation plan managed by an experienced team that’s handled many previous migrations can insure a smooth transition to a new system, on time and on budget.
Multiple systems bring multiple risks.
Whether you’re choosing to migrate to your current vendor’s new solution or make the move to a new provider, will all of the functionality that you need be included in one system? Or is this transition just the tip of the iceberg with more disruptive system migrations coming down the road?
It’s also important to understand how your system was built. Has it been developed by a seasoned team, or has it been cobbled together from different industry acquisitions? And what’s the provider’s roadmap for growth and investment in the product down the road?
Multiple systems mean multiple logins, multiple passwords for employees to remember, and multiple processes to be learned. Read the white paper Why Less is More - Consolidate Compliance Technology to Reduce Cost and Risk to learn how a singular system helps firms manage compliance more efficiently and effectively.
If you’re in the market for a proven compliance solution on a singular platform with an experienced and tenured team, MCO can help.
Scalable to grow along with your business, MyComplianceOffice brings affordable automation to your compliance program. Our alert-based platform integrates data and functionality into one unified view, uncovering exceptions and issues via a simple and intuitive interface. Implement the entire solution for a seamless approach to employee compliance or choose just the modules you need right now.
Contact us today for a demo.