Business compliance is a generic industry term meaning how well a business follows the regulations and laws governing its commercial activity. No one starts a business to be a business administrator. However, as your business grows over time, you inevitably add more personnel to the equation. It is especially exciting seeing future dreams becoming reality but often the admin involved in hiring personnel can contribute to that excitement. Your business compliance professional will likely be integral in the growth and management of your business for many years.
The process of hiring business compliance officers involves examining
the current structure of your business. Typically, the first step involves interviewing potential candidates until you have made a final decision on who to hire. During this stage, your business compliance as a service officer will meet with you and go over a list of your company’s internal and external requirements. This will include an inventory of all employment policies and procedures, your company’s Fair Share Policy (if your business is a public sector organization), your Memorandum and Articles of Association (assuming your company is not a private enterprise), the Memorandum of Understanding with your suppliers, and other requirements specific to your business operations.
Each of these items requires a unique approach. Because of that, the initial candidate selection process may also involve interviews or discussions with staff to determine which of the business compliance requirements are most pressing. For example, your suppliers are required to submit annual reports to you and, if they fail to do so, fines can be assessed. Similarly, your employees are expected to meet annual reporting requirements and, if they do not comply, serious actions can be taken against them.
As you assess the overall compliance requirements of your company, you may need to consult with a qualified tax advisor. Because some states require LLCs to register and pay taxes even if the business structure is inactive, business owners who elect to operate in this state may need to consult a tax advisor to make certain that they comply with their state’s business structure laws. In addition, some states have rules about the filing of an annual report to show your business meets all of the applicable business requirements and may need an accountant or tax advisor to help make this process easier.
Another way to ensure compliance with your state’s business requirements is to select your vendors carefully. Because of the volume of companies entering the online marketplace, vendors are becoming very selective in whom they provide services to. Vendors will be particularly sensitive to the challenges that new business clients may present. Therefore, it is recommended that you select vendors who have significant experience in helping your new and burgeoning business become compliant. In addition, in the early days of your business, before you have completed any of the planning and development that you will need to be in compliance, you may want to consider working with a business compliance service. These firms can assist you with everything from filing your annual reports to collecting payroll information.
One of the best ways to become ready for your new year’s business
compliance obligations is to begin the planning and development processes now. Make a list of all of the personnel and resources that you will need to accomplish all of the business compliance requirements. In particular, identify those employees and contractors who are responsible for handling your company’s external business compliance needs. In general, these individuals should be assigned to specific departments or projects to ensure their continued professionalism and dedication to doing what it takes to be compliant. (This doesn’t mean you cannot hire additional staff or contractors to handle these tasks; however, the list of personnel and resources needed to fulfill your overall business compliance requirements should be clearly established at the beginning of the year.)
- While your company is in the early stages of being compliant.
- It may not seem like all of the issues that arise are matters of great importance.
- However, over time, as you come into closer contact with your business compliance obligations.
you will come to appreciate all of the important interrelated decisions that must be made. This will lead to an increased sense of awareness and responsibility about how your business is regulated and if you are in violation of any of your company’s regulations. In some cases, this awareness can inspire you to take corrective measures and in some cases, it can even result in your company being fined heavily for illegal business practices. For example, if you find that your company is in violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act or any other similar federal or state law, it is possible that your business could be subjected to criminal charges.
Being aware of and understanding your company’s legal obligations is an important part of building a solid compliance program. You want to make sure that all of your personal and business partners fully understand the legal obligations that you face and are aware of how to remain compliant. As always, it is important for any business partner to make sure that he or she is not personally liable for the compliance violations. Always be careful to consider the potential consequences of failing to remain in full compliance. While fines may not seem like a big deal at first, failing to stay in business could soon cause you to lose everything, including your business license.