Groundbreaking Study on State of Compliance Readiness in North America Underscores Gap Between Management Expectations and IT’s Ability To Implement Appropriate Technologies and Procedures

Corporations struggle to align compliance and control with business processes in the face of mounting volumes of electronic content and a challenging regulatory environment

PALO ALTO , CA and Rutherford, NJ – September 13, 2023  – While the majority of chief executives confirm their attention on compliance issues has measurably increased in the past six years, less than half of IT executives consider compliance to be a “critical initiative with full management support.” Meanwhile, nearly 40% say their company’s IT execs don’t understand current regulations well enough to effectively implement compliance technologies and policies.

Those are just a few of the key findings in a comprehensive report issued today by the Business Performance Management Forum (BPM Forum) and AXS-One Inc. (AMEX: AXO), a leading provider of high performance records compliance management software solutions. The report, developed in partnership with Chief Executive Magazine and the IT Compliance Institute, is titled “Compliance Enabled Enterprise (CEE) the Future: Building the Compliance-Enabled Enterprise,” and it takes the closest look yet at an issue that has assumed mission-critical status within corporate America: While compliance issues around regulations such as Sarbanes-Oxley and related legal complexities have become a top management priority, many companies are still a long way from developing the IT infrastructure, policies and processes needed to align with compliance objectives. As a result, these companies remain seriously unprepared for a lawsuit, audit or request from a regulator.

The new report builds on qualitative interviews with senior executives and subject matter experts; a quantitative survey conducted in partnership with the IT Compliance Institute; and a related survey conducted by Chief Executive magazine, the only magazine written strictly for CEOs and their peers. It paints a vivid picture of a business environment in which compliance is definitely a management concern, policies and procedures are yet to take hold, enforcement is a loose concept, and management’s familiarity with the realities of information management is painfully lacking.

“This issue clearly represents a serious threat to corporate America: More than just a matter of building appropriate IT infrastructures and managing information, it represents the potential failure of top management to do the heavy lifting needed to achieve true compliance: locate resources, implement the right technologies, develop viable policies and procedures, ensure enforcement,” said Donovan Neale-May, executive director of the BPM Forum. “In recent years, courts and regulatory agencies alike have been willing to impose harsh penalties on enterprises that are not up to par. This study indicates that the apparent corporate focus on compliance has not translated into strategic and tactical initiatives that have an impact on business operations, and this leaves many companies vulnerable.”

In particular, the study reveals numerous potential weaknesses within corporate technologies and processes:

  • Close to half, or 47.3%, of all senior executives are concerned that their companies’ failure to effectively archive and manage all of their electronic content represents a critical liability for their organization
  • In a further sign of the ambiguity that still surrounds compliance activities, 35% of the respondents remain in the dark as to how much of their IT budget is tied to compliance-related technologies
  • Fully a third of the respondents, 33%, say they have no corporate policy covering electronic records management (nearly 20% don’t know whether they even have a policy).
  • Barely 40% of the respondents feel their companies are effectively enforcing the electronic records management policies that actually are in place
  • While lawsuits supposedly represent a constant threat, more than a third of the respondents, 36.4%, say their companies have no technologies or policies whatsoever in place to manage a legal discovery order involving electronic records
  • Almost 41% of the respondents say it would take several days to a week or more to retrieve e-mails related to a particular transaction

“Each year there’s a significant rise in government regulations and corporate guidelines, together with a steep climb in the amount of content generated, and it represents a collective migraine for compliance, legal and IT executives,” says Bill Lyons, Chairman and CEO of AXS-One. “Ultimately, this is a top-line management issue. From the CEO on down, the entire leadership team must take responsibility for providing the resources needed to develop compliance procedures, and ensure that the policies are not only enforced but effectively integrated into routine operations. Only then will companies be fully prepared for compliance investigations and legal orders, as well as reap the benefits that come with a complete overhaul of business procedures around content and compliance.”

The full report – “CEE the Future: Building the Compliance-Enabled Enterprise ” – is available by visiting www.bpmforum.org or www.axsone.com.

About the Business Performance Management (BPM) Forum
The BPM Forum was organized in 2003 and provides support to thousands of senior executives and practitioners representing global enterprises with more than $500 billion in combined annual revenues. The forum’s knowledgeable and influential members excel in strategy, operations, finance, technology, business innovation and boardroom roles. With leadership from GlobalFluency ( http://www.globalfluency.com/), the BPM Forum actively researches, develops and communicates new and proven methods to execute strategy, sharpen budgeting and planning practices, improve business processes, strengthen financial management disciplines, and drive performance accountability across distributed organizations. Visit www.BPMForum.org or more information about BPM Forum intellectual capital initiatives, programs, membership, networking services and sponsorship.

About AXS-One
AXS-One Inc. (AMEX: AXO) is a leading provider of high performance Records Compliance Management solutions. The AXS-One Compliance Platform enables organizations to implement secure, scalable and enforceable policies that address records management for corporate governance, legal discovery and industry regulations such as SEC17a-4, NASD 3010, Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA, The Patriot Act and Gramm-Leach Bliley. AXS-One’s award-winning technology has been critically acclaimed as best of class and delivers digital archiving, business process management, electronic document delivery and integrated records disposition and discovery for e-mail, instant messaging, images, SAP and other corporate records. Founded in 1979, and headquartered in Rutherford, NJ, AXS-One has offices worldwide including in the United States, Australia, Singapore, United Kingdom and South Africa. For further information, visit the AXS-One web site at http://www.axsone.com.