Over the past few decades, a broad range of governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) management solutions have entered the market. Research firm GRC 20/20 has mapped over 800 different GRC technology solutions, and the space continues to grow. This abundance of options complicates organizations’ ability to effectively evaluate, select, and implement the right GRC platform.
Some organizations are looking for a niche tool to help them address regulatory burden or a specific risk area (such as third-party risk, IT security, or business continuity), while others are looking to manage a broader range of challenges and requirements.
Organizations need to understand their greatest needs, the risks they face, and regulatory requirements before determining what solutions could best serve their needs. However, due diligence is often easier said than done.
Some solution providers are not always honest about their capabilities, and on top of that, an impressive feature lineup does not equal ease of use. Even client references tend to provide an incomplete picture of the user experience. Gaining an accurate sense of whether a vendor or product is a good match for your institution can be difficult, and many teams realize too late that the GRC solution they’ve selected isn’t the best fit for their needs.
Some of the common pitfalls of evaluating GRC solutions include:
Organizations need to ensure that they implement a solution that flows seamlessly into their operations and engages all levels of the business. Many start the GRC technology evaluation process with identifying must-haves and dealbreakers, stakeholder needs, risks and requirements to address, and resources for a proper GRC architecture. Finding the right solution requires collaborative effort across the entire organization, such as IT, compliance, and audit. Making the right decision requires a substantial investment of time and effort, not to mention the financial investment required for purchasing and maintaining the platform.
In return for that investment, a comprehensive GRC solution can enable increased efficiency, effectiveness, and agility. However, organizations first need to establish a strong risk culture, controls and policies, and effective processes within their current GRC program to make a technology investment effective.