Our next great feature: Linked Fields in policyIQ

Does the task of updating control documentation in more than one location seem redundant and a drag on your day?

Changing the description or general governing details of any page in policyIQ can create a wave of changes that need to be made in other places in the site.  Wouldn’t it be great to make the update once, and have that update be reflected everywhere?

It definitely would be.  Consider it done!

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The next update of policyIQ will include a new field type: Linked Fields.  This field will be a field that is auto-populated with the data from an existing field  on a linked page.  For our SOX and Audit clients, think about things like control descriptions.  These descriptions are periodically tweaked, and that change needs to be reflected anywhere the description appears.  We’ll create a linked field on our test result pages that are likely linked to this control page, and point it at the description of the control page.  Because of this setup, the control page can be updated, and the test page will automatically pick up those changes.

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Creating new linked fields is easy, and it’s coming to your policyIQ site in the next few months!  Please contact us with any questions or thoughts on how you may take advantage of this huge new feature.

 

Talking about Audit Efficiency in Atlanta (TAC 2016)

RGP and the policyIQ team were honored to be invited to speak at the Atlanta chapter of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA)’s conference, held on Friday, September 16.

policyIQ’s Managing Director, Chris Burd, tackled the topic of “Ways that Technology Can Expedite Internal Audit’s Daily Work”.  With attendance for the session well over 200, the topic was clearly one that generated a lot of interest.

An unscientific “show of hands” poll of the audience found that only about half of the attendees currently utilize a software application that is designed for Internal Audit or Governance, Risk and Compliance programs.  For those not utilizing an application, the session generated a number of ideas and stressed the value of having a tool to expedite and streamline the process.

For those that do use an internal audit application, however, the conversation also allowed the attendees to ask and offer suggestions to others of ways to improve their current audit work.  The discussion followed the following steps in the Audit Cycle:

auditcycle

Two specific areas that were called out as areas of interest by the attendees were the work of Evidence Collection and that of Issue Tracking.

Evidence Collection

In evidence collection, we talked about ways to automate the evidence collection process, as well as some of the challenges of doing so.   While a fully automated evidence collection process is the ideal end goal, the discussion touched on making sure that you also provide the right amount of training and oversight to those individuals participating in the process, to alleviate stress of a new process and minimize the risk of invalid evidence submission.

Issue Management

The topic of issue management focused primarily on the idea that issues are most effectively managed when they can be easily linked to the audit testing, controls, processes, or risks from which they originated.  Having a central system to manage risk assessments, internal controls and procedures, audit testing and issues allows for this flow of information.

 Looking for Technology that is Simple to Use and Implement!

As a sponsor, RGP was also able to meet with attendees as they stopped by to say hello.  Folks that stopped by to talk about technology almost invariably said the same thing – they wanted to find software that was easy to use and easy to implement.  Long and costly implementations caused many to simply continue doing things in the same Microsoft Office tools that they have always used.

Do you want to learn more about how to make your internal audit team more efficient and effective?  Contact us today and we’d be happy to meet to talk about some of the specific ideas and how policyIQ can meet those needs!

The Challenge: Technical Memos; The Solution: policyIQ

takecontrolWhen we think about all of our compliance initiatives, policy requirements and technical accounting adjustments that companies have to deal with, we often focus on specific types of initiatives and content – risks, financial or operational controls, contract reviews, audit testing, etc.

Recently we were approached with a question that really took us back to the basics of “content management”.

The Challenge:  Technical Memos and more

“Technical Memos, Accounting Documents, Whitepapers, Footnotes, Position Statements…these things are not stored in a consistent manner.

“It is very difficult to locate documentation that is stored in various formats on hard drives and shared drives…and sometimes still in filing cabinets!”

Our audience – in this case a gathering of SEC professionals – had been sharing ideas to better manage the various documentation, technical memos, position statements and whitepapers that they needed to retain.  Network drives, paper formats, or email archives were just not the right solution.  They acknowledged that many of them struggled with ease of access, security of the documentation, version control and audit trails of changes.

The Solution: policyIQ

We were invited to speak to the group about policyIQ, and how the application – with its simple interface, cloud-based access and flexible structure – provided a perfect solution.   By implementing policyIQ, even with a small group of licensed users and a larger audience of free read-only access, their organizations could benefit from:

  • Centrally Accessible
  • Searchable
  • User Friendly
  • Customizable Folder Hierarchy
  • Version Control
  • Tailored Security
  • No IT Resources Required
  • Multiple Solutions in One Tool

 

Regardless of what type of information or content your organization needs to get a handle on, consider policyIQ’s flexible structure and simple interface to help organize, distribute and manage your critical business content.  Accounting, HR, Legal, IT, Operations – and even your Board of Directors!  All departments need a simple way to manage critical content.

Contact us to find out more.

Work Smarter – policyIQ On-The-Go!

IMG_3479We’ve all heard the phrase “Work Smarter, not Harder”.  We keep that phrase in mind with every release of policyIQ, as we try to make each version of policyIQ smarter than the version before.

In version 7.6, we’ve added an improved mobile interface, allowing easier and more functional access to policyIQ on your mobile devices.  When policyIQ recognizes that it is being used from a mobile device, it will adjust the settings and provide a different interface, allowing you to easily search, navigate, approve items or respond to forms!

Respond to Forms via Mobile Devices!

IMG_3480Probably the biggest change in the newest version of the mobile interface is the ability to respond to forms.  When issuing out 302 Certifications, Control Reviews, Risk Assessments, Policy Sign-Offs or other critical certifications and questionnaires, your employees can now review the information on their mobile device to quickly complete their certifications.  For those team members who are frequently travelling – or for folks without regular access to desktop computers – this is invaluable!

Mobile access has our clients buzzing!

IMG_3481In one of our early release notes review sessions, Donna McLean, Knowledge Manager at Surgical Care Affiliates, expressed her excitement about the mobile access.  Now that version 7.6 has been released, we asked Donna how she feels about the mobile interface:

I love it!  It will give me quick access to look up a policy reference for a facility that is in the throes of a survey, or an Administrator who needs to refer to an HR policy and is having trouble locating it, and I’m not sitting at my desk to do so.  I’ll be travelling in a couple of weeks, and I know that inevitably things will pop up while I’m waiting for planes and I’ll need to get to PIQ in a hurry.  It is nice to know that I can from my tablet or phone.

Have you hesitated in the past to add your certifications or sign-offs to policyIQ?  There is no better time than NOW.   Contact us about pricing to expand the number of users who have access to forms, or to get some help to set up your new process!

Budget for 2017…have you considered using policyIQ Forms for Sign-offs, 302 Certifications or other uses?

Many companies are heading into budget season for the 2017 Fiscal Year, and for many policyIQ clients, that means considering how you’ll be using our software in the coming year.

Did you know that many clients choose to take advantage of policyIQ Form functionality?

form

While forms look similar to policyIQ pages, they are operated and used in very different ways.  Pages tend to capture items that are around for the long haul: policies, controls, risk documentation, contracts, audit data, etc.  These items can be checked in and out of user’s editorial control, and are typically publicly available on the site.

Forms, on the other hand, contain more of an “instance” type  of data, capturing point in time data.  Forms travel privately between the Administrator (the user sending them out) and the recipient only–there is no “Checking out” or “Checking in” a Form.  An administrator will typically send out many forms at once, in mass.  These forms may contain one or many fields, and the form itself can actually have a page (which in the case of using forms for policy sign-offs, the page would be an individual policy) displayed within the form.

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Follow up with your users that are responding to forms is also a breeze, and is easily one of the best parts of using policyIQ forms.  Follow-up communication can be automated, meaning the hassle of staying after your users to submit their certifications or other documents is out of your hands!

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Users who need access only to respond to forms are called Standard Users.  Standard Users have the ability, like Read-Only Users, to browse the policyIQ site and only read published content, and also respond to Forms.  These Users are typically purchased in bulk increments, and come at a lower price point than adding Advanced Users.  Because of this, it makes policyIQ an ideal place to conduct your Policy Sign-offs, Certifications, Control Self-Assessments, or Account Reconciliations.

Contact our team to inquire about adding Standard Users to your policyIQ site for this coming year.  Save time and money by eliminating other software tools and the hassle of sending hundreds of emails–conduct all of your work in policyIQ!

Efficiency Throughout the SOX Process

In a number of blog posts, we’ve highlighted the ways that policyIQ can be used throughout the entire SOX process – from risk assessments through issue remediation.  This past Thursday, July 28th, we took an hour to walk through the entire process in a CPE webinar to highlight ways to create efficiency at each step.

Did you miss it?

Before we hit the highlights below, we want to point you to the session recording and the slides, both of which are available for download.

The Big Picture

We highlighted a number of big picture advantages of using policyIQ not just for SOX, but for all of your compliance initiatives.  We talked about…

  • Simplicity of rolling out and managing a cloud-based
  • Advantages of being able to assign security and access
  • And the efficiency of a single source of information through the entire compliance and audit environment.

A single source means that when you make a change in one place, that change feeds all of the different perspectives on the data.

Controls

Efficiency at Every Step

We also dug into the efficiency that can be gained at every step of the process.  Just some of those ideas are presented below.  We also mentioned additional training available for some steps, and have linked those training sessions.

process

  1. Risk Assessments
    • Tie risk assessments at the 10K line item level to your risks and controls for ease of scoping.
  2. Control Updates & Review
    • Allow your control owners to make updates directly in policyIQ as things change, or require regular reviews of control documentation.
  3. Walkthroughs & Testing
    • Collaborate early (and often) with external auditors to ensure that your testing is capturing all of the detail expected.
  4. Issue Tracking & Remediation
    • Assign remediation plans to owners and use automated reminders to ensure responses are provided.
  5. Conclusions & Reporting
    • Utilize flexible reporting capabilities to trace issues back to the vulnerable risks and compensating controls to make a final determination about significant deficiencies or material weaknesses.

 

We also included the supporting functions that feed the process.

 

We’re ready to help you build more efficiency into your SOX program.  Contact us today and ask to speak with our client service team to walk you through implementing some new ideas!  Not yet a policyIQ client?  Contact us and ask us for a personalized demonstration!

Save time with Audit Evidence Collection in policyIQ!

For many years, we have been encouraging our clients to utilize policyIQ for all aspects of their compliance programs – from the assessment of risk through the remediation of issues.  However, during a recent conversation with long-time client, Travis Heyer (Director of Internal Audit at Great Lakes Dredge and Dock), we realized that we had not yet clearly illustrated in a live training session how to effectively request and capture audit evidence within policyIQ.

Travis graciously agreed to work with us to create a training session – and brought his colleague, Amit Patel (Senior Auditor) along with him.  On Thursday, March 31, we presented this session to a large number of very active participants.  (You can check out the recording of the session, or download the slides for a quick overview.)

quoteHeyer

It’s really all about saving time

Automating the requests for audit evidence can allow your internal audit team to…

  • Avoid playing “Match the evidence to the request!”
  • Minimize risk of using an old version of a file
  • Waste time sending annoying follow-ups
  • Secure documentation more effectively

It comes down to a huge time savings, freeing up internal audit resources to do the real, value-add work that your organization needs.

Pages or Forms?

While the training presentation focused on an evidence collection process in policyIQ pages, a similar process can be built within policyIQ forms.

evidencerequest

Pages offer the advantage of a two-way link between the Evidence Request and the Test page, so that your internal auditors can simply leave the files attached to the Evidence Request.  Pages also allow more than one individual user to contribute directly to the same Request.  However, utilizing Pages requires that all users who participate in the process of providing evidence are Advanced Users, a more expensive license in policyIQ.

Forms offer their own advantages, allowing for a simple issuing and follow-up process.  However, the link between the Evidence Request form and the Test page is less visible.  Evidence files will need to be downloaded and re-uploaded to the Test page by the auditor.  The significant advantage of the Forms process is that any individual providing evidence needs only to have a Standard User license, a less expensive license that can keep costs low!

Getting started in 5 easy steps

Our training session focused on how to get started in just five easy steps:

  1. Create Evidence Request template
  2. Build list of evidence in Excel
  3. Import evidence request list
  4. Assign requests
  5. Track progress and follow-up

We encourage you to check out the recording or the slides for more details on these steps – and reach out to us to help you to get your bearings and get started!

Free orientation call for new Site Administrators!

We know that the trend in business is to provide so many self-service options for customers that they never have to speak with their provider.  Answering services, online Q&A portals and hidden phone numbers are the norm, rather than the exception.

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The policyIQ team wants to hear from you!

Our policyIQ team at RGP is, truly, a different kind of software provider.  We want to talk with our clients and connect with users on a regular basis.  Our support phone (866-753-1231) is answered virtually every time by one of our representatives.  Don’t get us wrong, we will continue to add great material to our online help and recorded training – and we’ll continue to make the product so user friendly that users will have few questions.  That will leave us even more time to talk with you one-on-one to help you to apply policyIQ to new areas of your business or improve your efficiency!

If we haven’t talked lately, we may not have been able to communicate all of the evolutions happening in policyIQ.  Did you know that policyIQ offers…

  • Single Sign-On Capability
  • Bulk Content Update via Excel Import
  • Calculated Fields
  • Free Read-Only Access
  • Low-Cost Forms-Only Access
  • Phone and Email Support with a 99% Satisfaction Rating?

We’d like to connect. 

Particularly if you are a new Site Administrator or have recently taken on new responsibility in policyIQ, contact us and ask to schedule a short orientation call at no charge!  Or join our live Q&A webinar held bi-weekly on Thursdays (coming up next on January 28) to ask any questions you might have.

Not a policyIQ client yet?  We’d love to have you join our community!