B.Deploying new technologies for RIA compliance can be a huge undertaking, in addition to handling the constantly updated compliance regulations an organization must go through. Typically, any new technology is software that helps make regulatory compliance easier. But once you’ve picked a new technology from a vendor, there’s another big job to do. The software must be implemented and understood with your employees.
The RIA compliance software should provide superior ease of use and reliable support so that employees can adopt it quickly.
In the initial phase, as Chief Compliance Officer, you spent a lot of time getting to know the specifics of your new software and are ready to get your team on board. You have set up training sessions for consultants and others in the organization. They have given demonstrations and offered knowledge base articles. But if you are using new processes or software Compliance training, the challenge increases – especially when you have to prepare an entire team for the use of new software.
Every group has early adopters and you know those people. Especially in the RIA compliance area, the software you use is only as good as the users and the number of users. Here are some strategies you can use to help your team adopt new compliance technologies:
Identify the people responsible for training, understanding, and using your new compliance software. One recently Harvard Business Review The report examined a large multinational oil company with a view to adopting R&D. The study included a decade-long overview of 7,000 drilling projects, the career histories of more than 30,000 engineers through 1979, and a series of interviews with current engineers, managers and executives. The results showed that having key people at the top is important, but …
… if the local people are not enthusiastic about the project, they can always cite the need for adjustment as an excuse for the rejection or delay in implementation. But when the people are on board they will take up the challenge and do the necessary work to make the progress successful. … start by engaging with the people who are actually applying your solutions, rather than the bosses who sign budgets.
Find the people who are most likely to latch onto your new technology. Chances are you already know who they are in your place of work. Also, be open to lifelong learners and offspring. Early adopters can be found in all companies, not just in the younger generations of digital natives. Identify the people – maybe it is you – who are responsible for making it happen and find those who understand your organization’s vision. Who is responsible for integrating the new technology? Who do you need to work with?
Advances in compliance technology give employees more time to focus on other priorities. For an RIA, that’s more time to manage and acquire customers. A Pew Research Center Article from 2017 said …
… the workers of the future learn to deeply cultivate and use creativity, collaborative action, abstract and systemic thinking, complex communication and the ability to be successful in different environments.
Engage your entire team by looking for tools that include two-way communication around notifications and alerts. You want the process of sharing information to be easy for everyone involved, as that will help your compliance team thrive. Tools like SmartRIA’s software have automated notifications and alerts that let users know when it is time to meet compliance goals and when data suggests a potential compliance deficiency needs to be reviewed or corrected.
Mentors, how-to videos, and a solid knowledge base of how-to articles will help you implement new technologies. One recently Forbes Human Resources Council Article gave 13 suggestions for implementing new technologies. This included scheduling training sessions, providing supporting documents in a knowledge base for employees to keep track of those sessions, and offering several training options. Forbes wrote:
As companies adopt newer technologies to improve productivity, employees who were originally trained on older systems or who are new to a higher-tech workplace may have difficulty keeping up with the new technology or even refuse at all.
A comprehensive and varied training approach is important to help your tech-resistant employees with the introduction of your new software. And the more opportunities there are to learn, the better. With a calendar that offers multiple meetings, you can encourage employees to seek out these opportunities.
After your team members have completed the new software training, don’t forget to acknowledge their progress. Everyone is sometimes happy to receive a warm pat on the back.
Your software partners can also support you. For example, SmartRIA’s system includes real people running regular weekly training sessions with backup sessions available. In the RIA compliance area, find organizations with a solid knowledge base that you can access. Find a company that is constantly updating its technology and providing regular product releases and notices.
Pro tip: When exploring your options, pay attention to the usability approach of your potential compliance software provider. Have you made every effort to make the software easy to use and understandable? If it doesn’t look easy for you as a compliance professional during a demo, it’s probably doubly difficult for your IAs, access persons and administrators.
Helping your employees learn new technologies isn’t impossible, but it does require a little tact. For companies in the area of RIA compliance, the time saved by software that simplifies compliance and your employees to familiarize themselves with new technologies in other areas will help you. The technology you use should save time, simplify complex processes and provide security for you and your customers. Once that is in place, the time and energy that you previously spent on compliance management can be used elsewhere to develop and grow your business.
The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.