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After you have conducted a GRC tool comparison (as detailed in part two here), it is crucial that you also prepare for and effectively implement your automation solution so that it performs at its maximum ability. Without proper set up, your business cannot leverage all of the benefits your GRC tool has to offer.

In the final part of this series we will discuss how to go about implementing your chosen GRC automation solution and how its benefits provide return on investment.

Managing the adoption and implementation of an automated GRC solution

The cost and complexity of implementing a GRC solution to a business problem must be considered. As described in part two of the series, the savings associated with adopting a new solution must exceed the ongoing costs of coping with the business problem through current methods.

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Costs associated with implementing a new solution beyond easily quantifiable software licensing and maintenance include incremental IT infrastructure and associated administration and maintenance costs, solution administrator training, GRC implementation consulting services, end user training, documentation, and ongoing support services.

No small consideration is interleaving the implementation of automated user provisioning and compliance reporting solutions with other competing IT and compliance initiatives. The shorter and more discrete the solution implementation, the better the chance of getting it approved and implemented.

It must be said that many consulting companies are all too happy to provide long, expensive solution implementations.

In the case of ControlPanelGRC, no additional infrastructure or associated costs are required. The solution runs within existing client SAP systems as simply additional software functionality. Training and GRC implementation is measured in days, not weeks or months. Generally, ControlPanelGRC can be implemented incrementally, without interruption or retraining required outside the specific functionality being “turned on”.

Because ControlPanelGRC is written in SAP’s programming language, navigation to functionality is similar to any other SAP transactions or Fiori Apps. Generally, end users pick up navigation with little formal training.

GRC implementation results and how to show ROI

Adopting ControlPanelGRC offers several benefits for businesses that will ease the compliance process:

  1. Businesses will have higher quality service. With faster turnaround of user and role requests, visibility into the status of various changes on a self-service basis (as opposed to help desk tickets), fewer trips to the help desk for information, and SAP-based solutions that have fewer applications to navigate, businesses can provide more effective and efficient service.
  2. Improved IT team morale and less operational drudgery. Since automation tools like ControlPanelGRC are centrally managed, IT staff doesn’t have to search multiple data sources for information, requiring less manual provisioning. Such automation also means less “death by screenshots,” more streamlined, individual tasks that prove administratively easier (i.e. cleaner processes, fewer interfaces), and fewer routine requests. As a result, internal, technical teams are happier and can be better utilized to restore the balance of operational and project support.
  3. Streamlined audit support. This reduces the internal costs associated with supporting compliance by building and extending automated rule books, reducing time spent preparing for audit compliance reporting (i.e. reduced data sources, less manual compilation), providing reliable and automated reports, and eliminating the need for screenshots to support manual reports. Auditors also become more productive with more self-service, as opposed to having internal staff produce reports and answer questions. Furthermore, periodic certification management is streamlined through the elimination of manual lists of role owners, routing and tracking, removal approval workflows and de-provisioning, and compilation from multiple data sources – now one source in one dashboard.
  4. Position technical team to help drive, not impede, strategic initiatives. With fewer manual processes and thus more time, technical teams have more bandwidth to invest in new, strategic initiatives that more rapidly address GRC concerns. By spending more time focused on propelling the business, as opposed to operational processes, IT teams also see improved morale.
  5. Well received by management and the business. ControlPanelGRC has been proven as an effective GRC solution for companies like Forest City. It improves visibility for business and technical teams, boosts team productivity and morale, reduces compliance costs, and provides more reliable compliance information.
  6. Cost savings. A clear benefit includes incredible cost savings, estimated at $348,992 in the first year.

Expert Support: Assessment, Tool Comparison, and Implementation

Ultimately, GRC implementation of automation tools helps organizations experience more streamlined processes and enables IT teams to drive innovative and strategic business solutions. Less time is spent on manual tasks, which also reduces overall costs and risks involved. Talk to Symmetry today to learn more about how ControlPanelGRC can transform your business performance and how Symmetry’s IT experts can ensure your tool has complete and smooth implementation.

For more on GRC automation don’t forget to check out part one of this series exploring the costs of manual GRC, or part two in which we examine how to go about choosing a solution.

Scott Goolik - VP, Compliance and Security Services

Scott Goolik - VP, Compliance and Security Services

Scott Goolik is VP of Compliance and Security Services at Symmetry. A recognized expert in the field of SAP security and compliance, Scott has over 20 years of expertise in SAP security and is a regular presenter at SAP industry tradeshows and ASUG events. His experience includes working for one of the Big Four accounting firms and developing auditing tools, including those for segregation of duties (SOD). Scott is also responsible for architecting the ControlPanelGRC® solution which provides audit automation and acceleration of security and control processes.