I'm not sure why this is, but most CU people I know don't look forward to an appointment with their dentist, NCUA or their Compliance Officer. Compliance and Internal Audit are thankless jobs that play an important role in keeping financial institutions safe and on track.
With all the bad rap Compliance Teams get, I thought we'd point out some recent conversations of how Compliance Officers are looking for ways to make Compliance a profit center. Once you CEOs and CFOs stop laughing, read on.
Compliance as a Profit Center?
Banks and Credit unions are finding ways for their organization to save money based on recommendations derived from the Compliance Team. So when you think about it, if they save enough money for an organization, Compliance could be a profit center when looking for ways to reduce costs and still be in compliance.
For example, are there paper disclosures that are printed over and over again due to regulatory changes that can be switched to electronic delivery? How about daily notices that are printed and mailed that are more a "courtesy" than a required mailing? Are there ways for the CU to go "green" and still comply with ESIGN? (good ESIGN info in this compliance post but you'll need to be a subscriber to read it online)
In this post on the Trinovus Blog "Make Compliance a Profit Center", they suggest three ideas for financial institution Compliance folks to consider which help improve the bottom line.
Anthony Demangone, NAFCU's Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, when asked if his view of compliance changed due to his new role at NAFCU, shared five ways folks can really help themselves as compliance officers.
- Bone up on your communication skills.
- Think globally about your credit union.
- Understand statistics, PowerPoint, and Excel.
- Come with solutions.
Granted, not everything from Compliance will save money. But if Compliance folks just find one big way to save money, make the recommendation with an estimate of how much the organization will save and watch management's attitude change as compliance helps improve the bottom line in these tough times.
So, we're declaring national "Take your Compliance Team to Lunch" month! There's no one better equipped inside your organization to figure out how to comply with all the regs and save you money. In November, walk down the hall and just say hello. Or bring them coffee and a pastry when the office is having a breakfast meeting without them. Even better, add a little more light and turn on the heat in their work areas. Compliance Officers are people, too!
What do you think? Can it work? Have ideas to suggest where your Compliance Team has saved you money and improved your bottom line?