In mid-December, the US Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission released much anticipated new guidance on the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). This resource guide – 120 pages in length, but a surprisingly interesting read (at least for this geek) – outlines the DOJ and SEC priorities around FCPA, enforcement guidelines and attempts to clarify grey areas through the use of case studies and examples.
In January, Thomas Fox, FCPA expert and consultant for Resources Global Professionals, presented his take on the guidance in a webinar, “The New DOJ FCPA Guidelines: A Resources for the Compliance Practitioner”. (A recording of that webinar is available in the RGP event library.)
Anti-Corruption Compliance Continues to be Top of Mind
The subject of FCPA and Anti-Bribery compliance continues to be top of mind for our policyIQ team, as it is certainly top of mind for many clients of RGP. Virtually every morning there is at least one article at the top of my newsfeed pointing to developments or new perspectives on anti-corruption compliance. One of those recent articles, published on Tuesday on The FCPA Blog (Step Aside, ten elements, and make way for the hallmarks), highlights the Hallmarks of Effective Compliance Programs, as outlined in the recently released DOJ and SEC FCPA guidance. Mr. Richard Cassin, publisher of The FCPA Blog, suggests that these hallmarks “go to the heart of the matter” – and it isn’t hard to understand why.
The Hallmarks of Effective Compliance Programs
1. Commitment from senior management and a clearly articulated policy against corruption
2. Code of conduct and compliance policies and procedures
3. Oversight, autonomy, and resources
4. Risk assessment
5. Training and continuing advice
6. Incentives and disciplinary measures
7. Third-party due diligence and payments
8. Confidential reporting and internal investigations apparatus
9. Continuous improvement: periodic testing and review, and
10. Mergers and acquisitions: pre-acquisition due diligence and post-acquisition integration.
These ten hallmarks certainly do lay out a good plan for moving ahead with anti-corruption compliance, but it is important to recognize that there is not a one size fits all approach to how to implement your program. As the authors of the guidance point out,
Compliance programs that employ a “check-the-box” approach may be inefficient and, more importantly, ineffective. Because each compliance program should be tailored to an organization’s specific needs, risks, and challenges, the information provided below should not be considered a substitute for a company’s own assessment of the corporate compliance program most appropriate for that particular business organization.
How policyIQ and Resources Global Professionals can help
Your organization’s needs around anti-corruption compliance will depend on your level of risk – with factors ranging from what industry you are in, in what areas of the world you conduct business, and how much you rely on third party partners. As we mentioned, this is a subject that is top of mind for many of our clients – and therefore, we’ve been spending time recently developing solutions to help our clients manage their Anti-Corruption compliance program effectively and efficiently in policyIQ, with varying levels of complexity.
policyIQ can help you to manage risk assessments, code of conduct, related training and sign-offs, confidential reporting and follow-up, third-party due diligence, oversight, and audit. policyIQ can also be used to more effectively manage due diligence around acquisitions or help to streamline the integration of new business units.
Contact us for a demo of how policyIQ can help your organization to effectively implement an anti-corruption program!