What Does an Effective Policy Management Process Look Like?

  • December 6, 2018
  • James Woodworth

Inside Quantivate’s Policy & Document Management Software + 9 Policy Management Best Practices

An effective policy management program begins with a software solution that automates the document management process and eliminates costly manual processes that increase the risk of non-compliance. The best approach to minimizing risk is to implement a system that reduces overhead and labor costs by automating the development, approval, and attestation processes.

Policy and document management is an ongoing, cyclical process. For an effective management program, you need the ability to:

  • Develop documents in a way that matches your organization’s processes
  • Facilitate the proper approvals, distributions, training, and attestations
  • Ensure your policies or documents are read and understood

At Quantivate, we’ve created a policy and document management solution that facilitates industry best practices for policy management, while also giving organizations the flexibility to configure the document management process on a case by case basis.

policy and document management software

Quantivate’s Policy and Document Management Software is a flexible solution that gives users control over the document management process. You can select and configure the desired stages of a document’s lifecycle, including review, approval, attestation, testing, and training.

So how could Quantivate’s framework improve your organization’s management processes? Let’s look at some best practices for policy and document management and how they’re put into action in the Policy and Document Management Software module.

1. Development

For organizations that prefer to write, edit, and revise their documents using external tools, we provide an uploading method for ushering a document through the process.  Alternately, our inline document creation option allows users to create policies and documents directly in the system. Lastly, Quantivate offers a full suite of GRC tools and solutions, which allows us to create links between controls, laws and regulations, regulatory changes, and much more to ensure your compliance program is in full swing and effectively reduce risk.

2. Review

At many organizations, having a second set of eyes on a document is a critical way to ensure there are no grammatical, legal, or other issues with a document. With Quantivate’s Policy and Document Management Software, you can configure unique groups of reviewers, subject matter experts, or other users to review each document in an automated workflow. The inclusion of this stage is entirely optional within the software, but it may prove helpful to have that last inspection before moving on to managerial approval.

3. Approval

The policy or document approval process may involve the heads of departments or legal, finance, or other subject matter experts. These users are the final set of eyes before the document goes live, and their approval and buy-in take place through a simple, automated workflow.

4. Publishing

Distributing documents and collecting attestations is time-consuming and burdensome. Quantivate’s software simplifies the publishing step by enabling policy management teams to create tests, choose who will be attesting, and then send the policy to the employee self-service portal. Here, employees and end-users have access to the most recent policies and documents that are relevant to their group, role, or other categories. When choosing distribution lists, you can select recipients according to their classification, such as members of a particular work group or job function.

5. Training

If you need to schedule training for a policy, then Quantivate allows you to manage and track that training within the software. Send out reminders and emails automatically to users who have been selected by their group or job function, notifying them of online or in-person training locations.

6. Knowledge Assessment / Testing

Before policies can be followed, they need to be read and understood. An optional component of the policy management process is the inclusion of automated testing prior to attestation. This step requires end users to pass a knowledge assessment before signing off on a policy. Additionally, if people are consistently failing certain questions on the test, then a knowledge gap may exist that leadership needs to remediate.

7. Attestation

Quantivate’s solution sends automatic email alerts to notify recipients that they have a new policy or document to attest to. If they do not need to pass a knowledge assessment first, then users are sent directly to an attestation page after reviewing the required document or policy. Documenting attestations is a critical component of the auditing and compliance management process.

8. Exception Management

Quantivate simplifies policy management by uniting processes for attestations and exceptions in a single platform. Employees can initiate the process within the employee self-service portal, where requests are then forwarded for administrative approval and risk assessment. Once approved exceptions expire, the recertification process for those exceptions is also managed within the portal.

9. Reporting & Auditing

In a constantly changing regulatory landscape, it’s critical that you can prove to regulators that your compliance program is effective. With Quantivate’s built-in analytics and reporting tools, you’ll be able to easily and quickly prove to auditors that your employees understand and comply with regulations and that your policies have been published in a timely fashion.

Users who implement multiple Quantivate software modules gain the benefit of full integration, which equips them to report on the links between laws and regulations, regulatory changes, risks, controls, audit findings, and other categories. This level of oversight can make the difference between compliance and non-compliance in ways that the average policy and document management solution cannot.

How to Simplify the Policy Management Process

Policy and document management is an ongoing process with multiple moving pieces and contributors. With the relentless pace of regulatory change, you need a policy and document management solution that can keep up, while also holding the team accountable for the timely completion of document reviews, approvals, and publication.

With flexible workflows and built-in tools to reduce risk and improve compliance, Quantivate’s Policy and Document Management Software provides a complete framework for creating a consistent, streamlined policy management process throughout your organization. To learn more about how Quantivate can help your organization develop an effective policy management program, download the Policy & Document Management Software Buyer’s Guide or schedule a personalized demo.

About the author:

James Woodworth is a Program Manager on the Product Development team at Quantivate. The Product Development team is behind each product release from inception to launch. James is responsible for the design and development of ongoing enhancements as well as new GRC modules for the Quantivate platform.