It is easy to perceive Trade Compliance as a cost center that impedes business; wastes resources; and is a waste of time. What if the opposite was actually true – compliance did yield a ROI???
The challenge is for practitioners of Trade Compliance to educate the business on the regulatory environment, the need for compliance and the value of investing in and automating this area.
Quantifying hard dollars to compliance measures is difficult. Restating the government penalties for non-compliance simply gets old and becomes irritating. Utilizing analysis such as Business Process Management may be a better solution as it introduces speculation on how changes in key areas can yield savings, but BPM – oriented compliance solutions are not for every organization.
Do you need to focus on the compliance-only point solution or would you benefit from a broader, more strategic foundation whereby you could not only meet your compliance requirements today, but build a dynamic (LEAN) process to reduce the overhead of future compliance requirements? In my opinion this argument had already been settled when the decision to read this blog was made.
A company’s success can depend on whether or not it takes a tactical or strategic approach to solving its problems. This logic is nothing new... However in the past few years, a wide variety of regulatory compliance mandates have pushed organizations into a reactive mode taking away the ability to support changes before they are needed. You may feel the need to hire an expert as a good short-term solution to solve an immediate problem; however since regulatory requirements will likely increase and change over time you may have to continually add new capabilities or additional point solutions in order to address these new regulations. Having a member of staff may be required, depending on your exposure to International regulations.
For many of you considering automation, keep in mind that the ROI is only attributable to what the automation does, or the steps it saves… You still need someone savvy enough guide you through the murky waters of Trade Compliance.