Top skills that make a good compliance officer
31 Aug 2018

The fundamental duty of a compliance officer is to keep the ethical integrity of a company uninjured.

Compliance officers must make sure that the business activities of the organisation are carried out within a regulatory framework. To accomplish this, the compliance officer must possess a defined set of skills and expertise.

Let’s take a look at some of the important skills that make a really good compliance officer:

1. Risk assessment

Risk assessment is a vital component of the compliance function. It is important that the compliance officer takes into consideration all the factors for scoring the risk, as business decisions based on the risk score are critical for the organisation.

2. Conflict management

A compliance officer should know how to manage conflict and handle dissension, as there will be times where they may encounter circumstances requiring them to explain and defend their point of view. They should also have confidence and resilience when faced against tough situations and dealing with external agencies such as regulators.

3. Integrity

Integrity is a must for any profession. Regulation management process can only be implemented and achieved effectively if the officers have strong moral principles and honest qualities.

4. Keep updated

There is so much happening around the world, daily lots of news or articles are published by regulators and other international and regional bodies. Compliance officers should keep themselves updated so that they do not miss out on anything.

5. Interpret data

Not all the rules out there are black and white, there will sometimes be grey areas and the ability to interpret to make out perfect sense is remarkably significant.

6. Detail oriented

With regulatory requirements changing rapidly, it is crucial that the compliance officer pays attention and understands them in detail and avoids falling prey to regulatory inquiries.

7. Communication

Written and verbal communication skills are vital. The compliance officer must have the ability to communicate at all levels in the organisation so that they can pass around the relevant information that is understandable at the right time.

8. Problem solving

Effective problem solving demands a blending of creative and analytical thinking. Compliance officers face the problem of unclear and obscure regulatory policies, cost issues and so on.

The compliance officer should be able to identify the risk associated with particular policy-making so that they can draft a simple structured solution.

About the author: Suresh Chavali is a subject matter expert in the risk and compliance sector, focusing on know your customer (KYC), risk management, money laundering and terrorist financing schemes and trends. He has worked for various firms, including Barclays and Deutsche Bank.

This article is expressing personal opinions and is meant for information purposes only. The article does not intend to replace professional or legal advice. It is recommended that readers seek independent professional or legal advice, or speak to authorised persons/organisations.

Image: Stock Photos

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