Stretched for risk and compliance resources?

September 2, 2019

Resourcing gaps happen from time to time. Maybe an employee unexpectedly resigned, a new project requires more resources than you have available, or a role has grown and the current resourcing is no longer sufficient, or not adequately equipped for that growth.

 

Whether a resourcing gap is expected or unexpected, you have a gap that you need to fill. Where you have an administrative gap you might consider hiring an assistant or even a virtual assistant to fill that gap. But when it’s something more specialised, such as a gap in the risk and compliance function, you might consider hiring an employee or engaging consultants who specialise in these areas. The recruitment of permanent specialist staff can, however, involve an extended search for the right candidate, particularly in the risk and compliance space following the Royal Commission into Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services.

 

There are many possible solutions based on your business and circumstances, and no one particular solution will be suitable for all. Considerations should factor in your needs and budget, expertise requirements and flexibility of the arrangement.

 

These considerations are explored below.

 

In-house resource: employ or contract?

 

For some roles and functions it is appropriate and necessary to have an in-house resource and presence to undertake the role effectively. Options can include employing staff or contracting an external resource in-house for a specified period.

 

Employing staff means factoring the time and costs associated with searching, interviewing and negotiating with people, not to mention salary plus superannuation and leave benefits. The upside of this is that you have permanency around the role and, as such, this will be the right choice for some companies and for certain roles.

 

Another option instead of employing additional resources, is to invest in the staff that you already have in order to alleviate gaps when they do arise. This may be in the form of upskilling graduates or interns with a view to skilling them up in case a period arises where they need to step into a more challenging role.

 

Contracting an external appropriately skilled resource, like a consultant, can also suit many roles and functions. The scope, cost and time period is generally contracted up front so the overall cost, delivery and expected results are known. This also provides for a lot of flexibility and can be the best way to fill gaps during extended periods of leave where it doesn’t make sense to hire an additional permanent employee.

 

Benefits of in-sourcing expertise

 

Partnering up with an external provider, such as a consultant or adviser, can bring in both specialist and generalist skillsets and provide you with the added flexibility of dictating the hours that you want weekly for the period of the engagement, be it full time or part time.

 

Engaging external expertise as an in-house resource means that you benefit from their expertise and exposure to the industry. It can be a solution to scarce availability of skilled resources or to a shorter term need for a resource, for example in between operational changes from an impending merger or a restructure, or for additional needs during the term of a project.

 

The new ideas that can be brought in by an external party working within your team can help to increase engagement and encourage idea sharing and creation that the internal team alone may not have come to.

 

This option can be a good solution for particular roles, for example the CRO role, which is a new requirement for some organisations. This may be a hard role to find the right person for, and the benefits of engaging a consultant for the role are that you have flexibility in how the role operates and the hours, you are not paying for ongoing training and personal development to keep up with mountains of regulatory change, and you get someone that can hit the ground running. This can be particularly effective for smaller organisations that cannot justify the appointment of a full time or part time CRO with the requisite level of skills and experience.

 

Outsourced support

 

Sometimes in-house support is not a viable option or just not necessary. One option then is to engage a specialist to provide outsourced support for specific pieces of work.

 

Organisations can engage outsourced support from a consultant that can assist the entity in completing frameworks and policies, or work on specific projects, such as enhancing existing frameworks to reflect current business dynamics and meet stakeholder expectations, or building frameworks and policies for compliance with the latest regulatory requirements.

 

This kind of support can be very cost-effective for smaller organisations that may not be able to justify an in-house support. It also can be cost effective for smaller pieces of work. You should consider outsourcing when you lack the expertise and skills or time to undertake the work.

 

Outsourced support can also be a good option for specific roles or functions, where organisations are happy to enable the role to be primarily conducted offsite, with little onsite involvement needed.

 

Process automation

 

Another way to help alleviate workloads or free up some resources for new initiatives, is to invest in software and systems (like risk management and compliance systems) to automate some processes and reduce longer term administrative processes. This is a good long term solution, however, it generally has a large impact on resources at the population and implementation stage.

 

This is another area where outsourcing to get support with determining and inputting the right information to set it up can alleviate the additional pressures without taking staff away from their day-to-day responsibilities.  

 

Choose what best suits 

 

Whether it’s employing a resource, contracting or engaging external expertise, or even automating some processes to alleviate workload pressures, organisations will need to determine which option best suits their needs.

 

For some resourcing gaps, a number of options can be suitable and it will come down to the organisation’s needs, costs and the flexibility of the arrangement chosen. For example, both outsourcing and contracting in-house support can be ideal for projects, particularly those needing specific skills or talents that you may not need post completion.

 

In some cases, a combination of options may yield the best outcome.

 

Need help?

 

Hall Advisory is able to assist you with specialist expertise to fill the resourcing gaps that you may have in governance, risk, and compliance areas. We collaborate with organisations to determine which option is best suited and provide flexibility with insourced or outsourced support.

 

We have substantial experience providing risk and compliance roles in-house and supporting projects in the governance, risk, compliance and operational spaces. We also have a lot of experience supporting organisations with the development and implementation of risk and compliance frameworks, governance and conflicts frameworks and facilitating workshops.

 

Check out our Core Services page on our website for a detailed list of the services that we provide and please contact us if we can be of assistance.

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