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Compliance Tips for Small Businesses

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Global Payment and Compliance

Compliance Tips for Small Businesses

Compliance in business means following rules or doing things correctly per industry regulations, standards, ethical practices, government legislation, or other legal requirements. It’s one of the vital aspects businesses of all sizes must pay attention to.

Workpay
November 3, 2022
6
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November 3, 2022
8 min read
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Are you looking forward to starting a small business? Are you a small business owner? You’ve probably heard “business compliance” or“ compliance requirements.” It’s one of the vital aspects businesses of all sizes must pay attention to. It helps owners run their businesses smoothly and protects them in case issues arise.

This post will briefly examine business compliance types, their importance, and compliance tips for small businesses.

What is Compliance in Business?

Compliance in business means following rules or doing things correctly per industry regulations, standards, ethical practices, government legislation, or other legal requirements. In brief, being compliant means abiding by a set of rules.

What are the Types of Compliance in Business?

There are four core types of compliance that business owners need to know. They include;

A. Regulatory Compliance

Regulatory compliance is when a business adheres to international laws, local government, and other guidelines relevant to business processes. Often, specific regulatory compliance requirements vary depending on the country, industry, and type of business.

Regulatory compliance protects a business from fines, lawsuits, or penalties. It also helps to uphold the integrity of business processes and protect public and stakeholder interests. More importantly, companies that comply with regulations will likely build and maintain a solid reputation.

B. HR Compliance

HR compliance ensures your business follows policies and procedures with the welfare of your employees at the forefront. Generally, HR compliance helps a company comply with employment laws and related concerns such as equal employment, anti-discrimination, hiring & firing processes, employee safety, etc.

HR compliance helps organizations mitigate risk and avoid penalties and fines that result from labour and employment issues.

C. Health and Safety Compliance

Health and safety compliance is all about providing a safe working environment. As a result, employees can work to the best of their abilities without danger or risk of injury.

If a business is health and safety compliant, it reduces the risk of prosecution, fines, and reputational damage. Additionally, it may boost employee performance and morale at the workplace.

D. Data Compliance

Since businesses collect and access many customer and employee data, data compliance is essential. Data compliance ensures a company complies with laws, regulations, and data protection standards.

Data compliance enhances the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of an organization's data and related information.

It also shows customers and employees the organization care about their information which is good for the reputation and brand.

 

Example of business compliance

An ideal example of business compliance is a restaurant that acquires all the necessary licenses and insurance, pays employees fair wages per labor laws, and ensures employees work in a clean, safe place with appropriate gear. Also, the restaurant meets health standards and pays taxes as the government requires.

 

Why is it Important for a Business to be Compliant?

Here are some of the reasons why compliance in business is essential and how it benefits:

1. Reduced legal problems

The most evident benefit of compliance in business is that it reduces the likelihood of lawsuits, fines, penalties, work stoppages, or business closures. Compliance in all aspects of the business helps a company run smoothly.

2. It helps maintain a good company reputation in the market

Reputation plays a vital role in the growth of a business. Meeting legal obligations, industrial standards, or other requirements helps businesses build trust with customers, employees, and partners. Overall, remaining compliant brings about a positive reputation which may give a company an edge in the market.

3. It helps in employee retention

When a business is compliant, employees feel secure working in a professional environment. Therefore, they’re likely to stay for long in such a company.

Additionally, proper compliance enhances positive employee morale.

4. It enhances improved operation and safety

Business compliance benefits business owners more than it can harm them. Often, business compliance helps a business owner create a better working environment that meets standards and is safe for employees. In the long run, a business is likely to have better efficiency.

5. It’s one of the stepping stones to business growth

If a business owner has remained compliant and already enjoys the above-listed four benefits, it makes it for them to scale up their business. A compliant company will likely have minimal stumbling blocks if it expands or introduces a new product/service.

 

8 Compliance Tips for Small Businesses

Below are some of the things a business owner can do to remain compliant in business:

1. Register a company and obtain all necessary licenses/ permits

The first step to being a compliant business is registering a company with the relevant authorities/ agencies within its jurisdiction. Additionally, a business owner must obtain any licenses or permits if required.

Registering a business allows a business owner to hire and pay employees according to the laws, and being licensed protects your business, employees, and customers.

2. Keep up with the occurring compliance changes

To remain compliant, a business owner must stay updated with the continually changing laws. It means tracking changes on various levels, from international laws to local policies related to their business.

3. Have an employment policy handbook

Regardless of the number of employees a business has, it should have an employee handbook. It ensures a company’s policies are well articulated, communicated, and agreed on. More importantly, it sets clear expectations for your employees, defines employee rights, and outlines an employer’s legal obligations.

Above all, an employment policy handbook help protects the business against lawsuits and claims in the future.

4. Invest in automated HR systems to help  ensure compliance

HR systems or software do more than simplify onboarding, scheduling, interviews, and time tracking. An ideal HR system allows business owners to stay compliant and track employee information better.

Workpay is an example of HR software that helps businesses in Africa stay compliant and enhance efficiency. It also allows companies to manage and streamline their payroll processes while they remain compliant.

5. Keep all employee communication centralized

Asa business owner, it's good to have one medium of communication that fits the business needs. Avoid scattering business information on almost every messaging app, social media, etc. It only makes it hard to keep everything organized.

More importantly, centralized company communication maintains the integrity of information shared by employees.

6. Enhance the safety of the business website with an SSL certificate

Data compliance is vital in today’s business landscape. A business website is one of the assets storing some of the customers' and employees’ information, such as their names, addresses, and payment details.

Therefore, installing an SSL certificate is one way to ensure a website is safe and secure. It also prevents attackers from creating a fake version of the site.

7. Hire an attorney/lawyer for business needs

A business lawyer is one the essential professionals a business needs. A legal counsellor helps a business in various ways, from forming an ideal business structure and liability protection to legal documentation and dispute resolutions. Business lawyers also give legal guidance on protecting intellectual property, establishing compliance practices, and signing contracts.

A business lawyer/ attorney will significantly help an organization's compliance matters.

8. Provide a safe working environment

A safe and healthy workplace doesn’t only protect workers from injury and illness and increases productivity. It also helps a business stay compliant and ultimately impacts business KPIs.

Workpay
Workpay Africa

Workpay is a HR and Payroll software company that offers time & attendance, payroll, human resource, leave, expenses and remote teams solutions to businesses across Africa.

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