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Navigating cloud compliance in highly-regulated industries

Common barriers to compliance in Healthcare and Financial Services—and how your business can make compliance a strength. 

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Achieving compliance can be a monumental challenge for any organization. But it tends to be particularly labor-intensive for organizations operating within regulated industries. Healthcare and Financial Services are prime examples.

 

Both of these sectors come under close scrutiny from regulatory authorities. They’re also entrusted with lots of valuable client data. As such, they’re prime targets for hackers and auditors alike. 

 

The widespread adoption of cloud technologies has further complicated the compliance journey. Managing data in the cloud can be quite costly and time-consuming. Fortunately, these challenges aren’t impossible to overcome.

 

Let’s examine some of the common barriers to compliance. From there, we’ll shift our focus to how your business can make compliance a strength.

Three barriers to compliance—and tips for overcoming them

As you embark on your compliance journey, you’ll encounter three main barriers. These include:

Time requirements 

Achieving compliance requires a huge time commitment. Most healthcare entities won’t achieve their first compliance certification for six months. For some, it will take two years or more. Finance organizations must also navigate long pathways to compliance.

 

If you’re embarking on compliance for the first time, don’t delay. Start sooner than you think you need to. Additionally, having the proper tools in place from the very beginning will help you save time in the end—it’s harder and more time-consuming to retrofit your tools once you’ve already begun the compliance process.

Direct costs

The direct costs of compliance can be high. Initial compliance efforts can be especially expensive. Your organization will need to pay an assessor and the regulatory bodies. Additionally, the organization might have to purchase software or tools to support and automate the compliance processes.

 

While the direct costs can be notable, non-compliance is far more costly. Winning a single customer due to having compliance certifications (that your competitors may not) will offset the initial investment costs. If compliance efforts prevent a cyber attack, the ROI will be immeasurable. 

Indirect costs 

To meet compliance goals, organizations have to reroute internal resources. The expense of these efforts can vastly outweigh direct costs. Achieving compliance requires a commitment by almost every team within your organization. This means that all departments will incur indirect impacts.

 

Keeping everyone focused for the duration of the journey can be difficult. One way to keep morale high is to gamify compliance for employees. You can do this by creating engaging challenges and rewarding team members for hitting milestones.

Support your compliance journey with the right tools and resources

As you prepare to start your compliance journey, there are two things you should be aware of. First, compliance isn’t going anywhere. It will always be a challenge that your business needs to overcome. Second, compliance is never easy or simple. It takes constant vigilance. More importantly, it takes the right resources.

Despite these facts, achieving compliance is possible. That said, you need the right resources to meet your compliance goals. Starting your journey without the correct tools and support will compound your costs and your frustration.

Stay informed on the latest compliance insights, tips, and success stories with the Compliance Alliance: a collaboration of security and compliance providers to elevate awareness on what it takes to run new companies securely in the cloud.

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