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Three in four in-house lawyers expect compliance spend to rise

Posted by: Laurence Simons 14/06/16
Almost 75% of senior in house lawyers expect their organisations compliance spend to rise over the next five years according to research from Legal Week. According to the study the increasing complex regulatory environments in the UK and Europe are leading putting corporate fines on an upward trajectory.

The report, which was produced in association with Pinsent Masons, indicated that ‘achieving a robust cost-effective and business-friendly regulatory compliance is a major business challenge for general counsel and compliance counsel’.
Across the UK, Europe, and the globe, businesses are facing a rapidly evolving compliance landscape and the research suggests that 73% of survey respondents believe that their compliance spend will increase over the next five years.

Though the cost pressure is the highest in the financial services sector, where 87% of respondents indicated that they expect compliance spend to increase, the pressure is largely universal, with 67% respondents from all other industries reaching the same verdict. Moreover, of those who expect their spend to increase, 86% expect it to grow by up to a fifth.

Respondents indicated that their biggest challenges in effectively complying with regulation, were the volume of regulation, shifting and unclear guidelines or regulations and cross border compliance with different regulatory regimes.
However the report also found that while compliance may be a top priority for businesses in many sectors it is not adequately budgeted for. It concluded that the inherent reaction to a rising workload was to increase headcount, but it also highlighted the potential of technology to help reduce the burden on in house professionals. The report argues that a greater uptake of technology would not only increase efficiency by automating much of the operational aspects of compliance, but also enable in house and external professionals to be used more effectively.

While the evolving compliance environment may be a burden for business leaders, the ever growing and ever evolving regulatory landscape will undoubtedly increase demand for professionals with extensive experience for years to come.
Tagged In: Compliance
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