By David Trout & Chor-Ching Fan
Today, businesses of all sizes face growing challenges from compliance requirements. Staying in compliance requires more skill, experience, and knowledge than ever before. Having a capable expert to handle your company’s compliance initiatives is now a must and many small to mid-sized firms are struggling to find the right talent in the right amounts. Unfortunately, cybersecurity and data privacy compliance is not a discipline that just any employee can just pick up and effectively deploy to save the day. Common challenges include:
- Interpretation of vague regulations and requirements
- Policy and procedure development
- People power required to execute initial and ongoing compliance activities
- Lack of experience preparing for and navigating an audit or assessment
So, at this point you know that your company is going to need help in order to ensure effective compliance. But how much help? This usually depends on a few different factors that we describe here to help you make improve the changes of project success.
One of the most important factors is your company’s urgency to achieve certification. For many businesses it can be an immediate threat to remain non-compliant. Also, if you are looking to compete in an industry that requires cyber compliance such as healthcare or defense, failure to comply can significantly impact your firm’s ability to win new business or maintain existing work.
How much help your firm will need is also largely dependent on your previous corporate experience and staff expertise. It takes a certain level of proficiency to carry out gap assessments, generate compliance documentation, and sustain compliance efforts. Many firms simply do not have the know-how to take on or even develop these skills. More importantly, it takes experience to know that you’re doing all of the above correctly. Who wants to waste time and money on such significant investments? Further complicating matters, some companies may need to comply with more than one set of rules and regulations; creating multiple moving components that can overwhelm and confuse any compliance novice…another example of where experience matters even more.
Even if your firm possesses or can develop the expertise, significant woman or man power is required for ongoing compliance management and execution. Expertise without the proper resources to execute will put your firm in the odd position of knowing what needs to get done but constantly playing catch-up on these initiatives. One option is to engage consulting firms to manage compliance efforts, but most small and mid-sized companies cannot justify an outsourced team of SME’s. Even after a major investment to get compliant, requirements such as policy updates and evidence collection live on in perpetuity. In order for your company to be successful, a steady level of effort is a must to sustain compliance and effective risk management.
The last major consideration is the breadth and depth of compliance gaps that surface upon completion of an assessment, and your in-house capability to remediate them. Once gaps or weaknesses are identified, most compliance frameworks require them to be documented, tracked and rectified in a timely manner. Thus, your firm is most likely going to need guidance and knowledge resources to close these gaps. The reality is that even a “small” remediation effort will have an outsized impact on smaller companies with less budget and expertise. Even a company comprised of a single 2000 square foot CNC shop might require a host of changes to achieve CMMC compliance. The right cybersecurity advisory can help you quickly size the effort and save you lots of money by suggesting strategies to minimize compliance boundaries and prescribing appropriate remediation efforts for your staff or MSPs to implement.
A Solution for SMBs
We provide a cost-effective solution to achieving compliance across the spectrum of scenarios based on the factors described above. We call it Rizkly Guided Compliance. Rizkly Guided Compliance is an approach to managing your compliance efforts with a combination of powerful software and expert advisory. Rizkly customers gain access to our SaaS compliance program management app along with the right amount of expertise and people power to solve their individual compliance challenges. Our Guided Compliance approach offers the opportunity to boost your in-house compliance acumen, allowing greater efficiency over time. You get the benefits of expert compliance professionals at your fingertips, without the high investment required when you contract with a traditional expertise-only firm. Our approach to partnering allows you to achieve compliance objectives without taking your eyes off of your core business. Does Rizkly Guided Compliance sound right for you? If it does contact us to learn more.