What is Controls Management Software?
Controls typically only become a priority for organisations when they fail, resulting in increasing costs and a reactive approach. A strong focus on controls can result in better decision-making, enabling faster and more confident actions.
Business leaders are increasingly exposed to risk, meaning an effective framework for internal controls, which is not reliant on an old manual, siloed approach, is vital to business confidence and helping organisations achieve strategic goals.
The UK Government has now identified the need for a proactive controls regime and has therefore launched ‘UK SOx’.
UK SOx is the unofficial name given to the UK new corporate governance regime. The Government has announced details of its corporate governance reforms which will move the UK regime closer to the US Sarbanes-Oxley regulations. The headline change is a new requirement for public disclosure of a Director’s Responsibility statement on the effectiveness of controls for financial years ending December 2023 and after. The new corporate governance regime will be enforced by a new regulator, the new Audit, Reporting and Governance Authority (ARGA) which will replace the Financial Reporting Council (FRC).
Directors will also be required to conduct an annual review of the effectiveness of internal controls over financial reporting and explain the outcome in their annual reporting. This will be required to support their Responsibility Statement.
A digitally-enabled framework for internal controls ensures that risk assessment and controls are kept up to date and embedded in the organisation. Elements of a control framework typically include organisation-wide policies, structure and ‘tone at the top’, risk assessment, business and IT controls, monitoring and reporting. This capability will be fundamental to helping organisations meet the UK SOx requirements and discharge the responsibilities of Directors.
CoreStream’s Controls Management software is designed to facilitate an end-to-end controls framework from the identification of risk, mapping of processes and controls through control self-assessments, controls testing, remediation, assurance certifications and reporting.
It enables process, risk and control owners to identify, understand and manage information whilst also providing functional controls management teams with the features to manage and report on the controls framework.
What are the benefits of Controls Management Software?
Controls Management Software helps to ease the administrative burden of controls related processes. If you are an organisation that is required to comply with UK SOx it will also support your process of documenting and assuring the effectiveness of internal controls, supporting the public disclosure required of Directors.
CoreStream’s capability enables and supports the identification, documentation and management of your organisation’s processes, risks and controls. The software facilitates different assurance approaches to provide management with the required comfort over the design and operating effectiveness of controls. That ensures fulfilment of statutory and regulatory obligations in addition to meeting the needs of stakeholders.
Accountability and transparency are key elements of a robust framework of internal controls, assisting effective reporting to stakeholders. Our solution provides clear ownership throughout the end-to-end lifecycle of your internal control framework, helping you to deliver an efficient but robust framework that supports the accurate reporting of your internal controls.
What are the risks of not having Controls Management Software?
Without Controls Management Software an organisation increases inefficiency in the management of their internal controls and consequently increases costs. Furthermore, without Controls Management Software it makes compliance with UK SOx much harder to achieve. In addition, the lack of an integrated Controls Management Software can exacerbate the following issues:
- Misalignment of controls with business and risk objectives, slowing a business down and providing a false sense of security.
- Lack of a common taxonomy, resulting in an inability to apply a consistent approach to the measure, execution and reporting of risks, controls and issues.
- Creation of controls in silos to address specific regulatory requirements or emerging risks, resulting in redundant and overlapping controls.
- Lack of a coherent approach to monitoring and testing across all assurance providers in an organisation, resulting in similar or comparable controls being evaluated multiple times.
CoreStream’s intuitive and flexible controls solution includes all the key features to help you implement, embed and manage your internal controls framework. The solution comes pre-configured but can also be adjusted through no-code configuration to meet your exact requirements based on your operating model and approach to internal controls. Key features include:
- Process management and process mapping with change control features and the ability to export to Microsoft Visio;
- Risk and Control Matrices – both at a framework and organisational entity level;
- Ability to link policies, processes, risks and controls together;
- Control Self-Assessments for control owners and performers;
- Control testing features to support continuous or periodic controls testing;
- Deficiency and remediation action management;
- Assurance certifications and management attestations;
- External Auditor access (if required); and
- Real time reporting dashboards to manage the end-to-end control lifecycle and report on the health of internal controls.