The Client: A multi-billion dollar chemical manufacturer, headquartered in India, with operations across the globe

Overview

The client had to manage and oversee compliance testing activities for a wide range of regulations across multiple, dispersed business units in India. The biggest challenge was a lack of visibility into compliance. MetricStream’s solution provided a single, unified system to manage and track compliance across the organization. All regulations, business units, and compliance activities were linked together in the solution to enhance compliance transparency, and to help the client identify and address compliance concerns effectively.

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Solution

The client evaluated multiple compliance management solution providers, and eventually selected MetricStream because of the comprehensiveness and breadth of MetricStream’s solution, as well as the capability of the underlying platform to be extended to address other areas of GRC such as risk management, audit management, and supply chain governance. 

MetricStream Compliance Management Solution offers the client a single, scalable point of reference to manage and monitor compliance processes across all business units in the country. The web-based solution maps the full range of compliance regulations to the associated business units, locations, processes, controls, and reporting cycles in a many-to-many manner. This integrated data model approach has made it easier to assign compliance tasks, and to track the status of compliance at various levels of the organization. 

All spreadsheet based compliance processes have been automated and streamlined for optimal efficiency. The solution also enables a federated approach to compliance -- each business unit can manage their compliance tests independently, while the solution automatically consolidates and rolls up the results from across business units to the central compliance team for reporting and analysis. Alongside, system-generated alerts and notifications keep compliance tests on track, and help ensure that they are completed in time.

Below is a brief glimpse into how MetricStream’s solution supports the client’s compliance processes:

Compliance test planning and scheduling 
Through the solution, the central compliance team creates a broad compliance plan, and schedules compliance testing assignments with specific start and end dates based on various regulatory requirements. The solution helps select the business units and areas for compliance testing, along with a compliance tester and approver in each location. 

Compliance test execution
According to the compliance schedule, the solution sends out automated alerts and notifications to assigned compliance testers with their tasks and assignments. Once the test is performed, the findings are recorded in the solution, and the data is then routed to the designated approver for review and analysis.

Reporting and roll-up
At preset intervals, the MetricStream solution consolidates the compliance test results from across business units, and rolls it up to the central compliance team for reporting. Users can closely track which business units have passed/ failed the compliance tests, whether or not the tests were completed on time, and what kind of issues were found. 

The solution generates over 20,000 reports to track various aspects of the compliance process, including compliance plan lists, status of test result approvals across locations, pass/fail status for each business unit, and progress of compliance tests at the process level. 

Challenges

At the client organization, the complexity of regulatory compliance had reached an all-time high. There were so many diverse regulations and requirements that the client found it increasingly challenging to keep track of compliance across their operations in India. Each business unit had to comply with a specific set of regulations. For instance, the taxation department had to comply with laws around tax filings, VAT returns, TDS returns, etc. The HR department had to adhere to payroll rules such as PF submission. The supply chain department had to meet hazardous and non-hazardous material handling rules.

At a broader level, each manufacturing plant had to comply with specific rules around effluent waste treatment, union laws, contract labor requirements, payment of wages, etc. There were also disclosure-related compliance regulations, trading-related reporting rules, and filing of rent renewals.

At the local level, there were other compliance mandates that had to be adhered to, and these laws often varied from one state to the next. Compliance reporting cycles also varied depending on regulatory requirements. Some business units had to report on a monthly basis, while others had to do so on a quarterly or annual basis.

For the central compliance team, it was a herculean task to track these regulations and compliance testing and reporting activities across multiple, geographically-dispersed business units. Each unit had their own testing systems and processes, and every quarter approximately 20,000 compliance tests were performed. This made it challenging to aggregate and compare compliance results at the corporate level. Moreover, most compliance test data was scattered across spreadsheets, and therefore, took considerable time and effort to aggregate and sort into reports.

The other challenge was ensuring that each business unit filed the right compliance data at the right time. Most often, email reminders had to be manually sent out and followed up - a cumbersome process that ate into the compliance team’s productivity and time.

Faced with these challenges, the client began looking for a complete solution that would help them manage and track multiple compliance regulations and processes across the enterprise in a simple yet effective manner, providing enterprise-wide visibility into compliance.

Why MetricStream?

The client chose MetricStream for the following reasons:

MetricStream Compliance Management Solution is widely used by leading organizations worldwide to improve compliance management.

The solution offers a single, integrated system to manage compliance with a wide range of regulations.

It can scale across multiple geographies, supporting compliance tasks at various organizational levels.

The extensibility of the underlying MetricStream platform allows it to be leveraged to manage other GRC activities such as audits and risk management.

Benefits

  • Simpler, more efficient compliance processes
    Instead of multiple cumbersome systems and spreadsheets, the client now has one solution to manage and track the full range of compliance regulations and activities across business units in India. More than 1,800 employees use the solution to manage up to 20,000 compliance tests per quarter.
  • Improved view of compliance across the organization
    All regulations are mapped to the corresponding business units, reporting cycles, and compliance testing activities. Therefore, at the click of a button, the client can view the status of compliance at various levels of the organization.
  • Timely and consistent compliance reporting
    The solution gathers compliance test results from across locations, and automatically rolls it up to the central compliance team for reporting. It issues close to 20,000 compliance reports a quarter which helps the client proactively identify areas of concern and non-compliance, and make informed decisions.
  • Minimization of manual effort
    The solution has replaced manual compliance processes with tightly streamlined and automated workflows. This has saved the client considerable time and effort, while strengthening compliance.

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