Researching compliance solutions for federal regulations probably doesn’t hold the top spot on your to-do list unless an audit is about to take place. Suddenly, compliance takes over your workday and your productivity suffers.
We’ve found that most mistakes occur when organizations are forced to scramble or try to enact solutions on their own. To help you stop procrastinating, we’ve created this cheat sheet that highlights issues we regularly see and solutions you can apply immediately.
Problem: Like remodeling your kitchen in November before Thanksgiving, waiting until the last minute to implement a compliance solution will cost you more. Faced with a deadline and needing to quickly meet requirements, you end up throwing money at the problem.
Solution: Plan ahead, and audit your current system. Once you know an external audit will happen, set up calendar events and reminders to internally evaluate your system, and figure out what needs to be done. Avoid last minute scrambling by blocking off time well over a month in advance.
Take stock of what you already have, and don’t need. One of our clients purchased an email filtering tool and Microsoft Enterprise Mobility without realizing their current suite had these features. Others pay for things they don’t need, like advanced firewall services.
Settling for an ‘okay’ fit
Problem: This is an easy trap to fall into. After assessing a particular product or provider, you feel boxed in because of the time you’ve invested. Even if a better solution is presented partway through the evaluation phase, organizations frequently stick to the original plan and are forced to adapt to the solution, rather than choosing a product that fits their needs.
Solution: Give yourself time to properly evaluate options. The reality is, finding the right compliance solution takes more than two weeks, and planning is at the core of meeting compliance mandates without cutting corners.
Trying to do everything on your own
Problem: Doing your own research sounds like a cost-effective approach to meeting regulations. Unfortunately it can also lead to selecting a vendor that fulfills some, but not all, of your requirements.
To make research easier, people attack compliance requirements one at a time. They bring in a vendor that has a solution, but it only solves one problem.
Solution: Speak with an IT consultant who will be able to understand the full landscape, and quickly size up what you need. Someone with extensive knowledge of available products can help you choose a comprehensive solution.
For example, Microsoft 365 combines Office 365, Windows 10, and Enterprise Mobility and Security (EMS) into one offering. Using this, or similar services, is an approach that turns compliance into an investment.
Implementing one-off compliance solutions
Problem: Sometimes, agencies end up with a patchwork of compliance solutions, and no unifying strategy. Typically, this is because people do their own research, or someone segments the selection process across different departments. As a result, the agency ends up with one-off compliance solutions and multiple programs.
Solution: Look for innovative products from companies that meet federal regulatory requirements, like Microsoft’s Cloud Stack. Designed to be compliant, this is an effective alternative to one-off solutions.
At Nortec, we can take a step back from your day-to-day operations and see the bigger picture. Using innovative products, like those offered by Microsoft and the Cloud we will keep your goals on track and define and implement a strategy that meets regulatory requirements.
Nortec is one of Microsoft’s Top 200 partners in the U.S. and serves clients in the Washington D.C., Philadelphia and Pittsburgh metropolitan areas. Our experts will work with you to understand your organization’s needs and the Microsoft licensing options that will help you achieve goals and maintain compliance.