Yesterday, we held the second NAVEX Global Online Ethics & Compliance Conference, one of the most comprehensive and best-attended industry events of 2013. We welcomed almost 2000 session participants to learn more about pressing ethics & compliance issues.
Sessions will be accessible from our web site in a few days’ time, but we wanted to outline one of our general sessions that had great interest and attendance – “Ignorance is Not Bliss: What You Don’t Know about Third Parties and Agents Can Hurt You.”
Due to its increasing relevance, we continue to hear more about the topic of third party risk management from clients. To address this – and conducted jointly by Randy Stephens (VP, Ethical Leadership Group) and Mike Vermillion (Senior Director, Third Party Risk Management Solutions) – we delved into the issue and best practices to manage the risks posed by third-parties systematically.
The use of third parties in business is increasing due to a variety of issues, among them: economic conditions, productivity, globalization, and specialization. Corporations are managing divergent legal relationships across a multitude of partners, and often struggle to gain visibility into hidden risks.
Unsurprisingly, the growth in use of third parties also increases the risks your organization faces. Third parties represent your company, but may have little or no loyalty to you and your business practices. And we’re finding that many organizations – both large and small – are unaware of all the third-parties with whom they do business (often numbering in the hundreds, but large organizations have them in the hundred-thousands) or know very little about them. Since international laws and guidance hold you accountable, that becomes an untenable risk very quickly.
There are some very specific third-party compliance best practices, including:
- Standardizing the contractual language used;
- A specific third-party code of conduct;
- Effective due diligence;
- Proper documentation; and
- Education and training.
We look forward to introducing you to our own Third Party Risk Management solution and demonstrating how it can help you manage the issues raised above, and more, to help strengthen the legally defensible position of your organization. This solution provides an automated and affordable single platform that allows you to asses, mitigate, track and monitor vendors and agents across key risk categories.
While third party risk was a timely topic for our Virtual Conference audience, we held over 10 other sessions on broader ethics and compliance, policy management and online training best practices presented by some of the most knowledgeable professionals in the field. Look for the full compendium of sessions to be available on-demand at our site early next week!