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Navigating Compliance Challenges in a Wave of Legislation

If you had to guess, how many government agencies do you think are currently exercising regulatory power over U.S. businesses? Stumped? The answer is more than 450. And that number is growing steadily.

And for each bill passed by Congress in the last decade, an average of 15 new regulations sprang to life, according to the U.S. Government and Accountability Office. That means for the 1,703 bills passed, approximately 25,525 new regulations were created.

Forever in flux, regulatory compliance is an ever-growing challenge that organizations must address daily. In our new guide, Compliance Challenges: Just How Big Is the Regulatory Burden for U.S. Businesses?, we help identify the related potential pitfalls facing your business, while also offering solutions that can help you not only stay compliant, but do so in a manner that’s effective, efficient and poised to give you a strategic advantage over the competition.

The cost you can’t afford to ignore

The compliance environment is fraught with risk, and the stakes are constantly rising. In 2020, the cost of meeting federal regulations reached $1.9 trillion, according to the Competitive Enterprise Institute. Comparing that figure to international gross domestic product, U.S. compliance would be the eight largest economy in the world in 2021. With that much money in play, it’s not hard to understand why enforcement, penalties and class-action lawsuits are also experiencing an uptick.

“We’re increasing the cost of noncompliance by using all enforcement tools provided by Congress where appropriate, including civil money penalties, liquidated damages and debarments,” said David Weil, administrator of the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division from 2014 to 2017.

And he means business. In 2020, the Wage and Hour Division collected an average of $706,000 in back wages per day. It also found that on average, $1,120 in back wages were due to each employee, indicating an enormous potential risk for employers nationwide. On top of a mountain of regulations, you have to worry about constantly shifting legislation, like changes to the American Rescue Plan Act and Families First Coronavirus Response Act, not to mention various requirements of the Affordable Care Act and COBRA.

4 steps toward a solution

You can always pour more energy and resources into your compliance efforts, but this is one area where it truly pays to have a “work smarter, not harder” approach. With our Compliance Challenges guide, you’ll see a few easy steps you can take to help meet your responsibilities.

  1. Embrace automation. So much of your compliance duties are about timely execution of notices and filings, and that’s where automation can really shine. By turning over repetitive, time-sensitive tasks to an automated system, you can be assured none of these functions fall through the cracks.
  2. Record keeping is key. Documentation is the backbone of compliance, so being able to keep records that are complete, organized and easily accessible is a must. Employing a single HR software securely stores essential data in one database of record, saving you from the headaches associated with producing, saving and retrieving vital information.
  3. Bolster your front lines. Ideally, you would catch noncompliance before it starts or at least address it immediately upon discovery. Engaging your managers with timely, relevant training can help them identify and deal with noncompliance events.
  4. Proactively identify risk. Forward-thinking policies and procedures can help you pinpoint areas of possible exposure and develop the systems and policies necessary for their mitigation.

Most importantly, you need to choose a digital partner that can help you win. When you have the seamless function of data flowing through a single software supported by updates on relevant legislation, you enjoy a robust system that puts you on solid compliance ground.

To learn more about how to identify and avoid the compliance risks that pose the most danger to your business, download our free guide and get ahead of the game!

Disclaimer: The information provided herein does not constitute the provision of legal advice, tax advice, accounting services or professional consulting of any kind. The information provided herein should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional legal, tax, accounting or other professional advisers. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should consult a professional adviser who has been provided with all pertinent facts relevant to your particular situation and for your particular state(s) of operation.