Most of South Africa’s formal industries are regulated by strict and elaborate legislation. The repercussions of non-compliance with these laws could be devastating.
The examples of companies brought to book for compliance-related offences in 2019 are plentiful.
In September, MTN was fined R5 million by ICASA for not observing the required notice period when increasing the prices of a WhatsApp bundle. The following month, the Competition Commission slammed Computicket with a R20 million penalty for anti-competitive practices.
Finally, December saw the South African Reserve Bank sanction a number of banks, including Standard Bank, for weaknesses in money laundering control. The Bank was slapped with a R30 million penalty.
Big companies and entities are often able to absorb the costs of these fines, but this does not mean it has no effect on their bottom line. For smaller businesses the risk of non-compliance could be greater.
Punishment through heavy fines or penalties for non-adherence are just the tip of the iceberg. Serious infringements may lead to the imprisonment of accountable board members, executives or managers.
Additionally, a punished company stands to suffer losses in productivity or revenue, as well as reputational damage. All these factors could lead to the resignation or retrenchment of employees, and a loss of interest in the company from promising job candidates.
Managing compliance is the responsibility of the compliance officer, whose work may further be complicated by the need to keep physical databases of legislation that may encompass mountains of documents.
Curated by a team of top South African legal experts, Lexis Assure is an online system that lets you monitor regulatory changes through automated alerts in order to help your business effectively manage risks to compliance.
Lexis Assure provides updates on regulatory changes in a range of industries through email alerts sent directly to your inbox.
These alerts provide you with accurate and reliable legal content that will sharpen your adherence to legislation and allow you to save time and cut certain costs.
A toolbox for easy compliance
The Lexis Assure platform provides your business with a complete regulatory universe that offers a convenient snapshot of all the legal acts relevant to your business and the associated compliance risk for each one.
Through the platform, businesses have access to meaningful analysis with Plain English explanations of the law and compliance requirements.
Additionally, Lexis Assure provides simplified board reports with summaries and analyses that can be easily understood and communicated.
To ensure that compliance changes are made and implemented on time, Lexis Assure offers a compliance calendar which flags the date when obligations take effect and gives details regarding non-compliance.
Pro-active alerts are sent via email within 48 hours of notice of incoming legislative changes. These can be customised and organised by subject area, aligned by the relevant industry.
To start with, the Lexis Assure Essential package covers regulatory changes to human resources, corporate finance and general compliance across all industries.
From here, customers can choose content from acts that fall under the following industries:
- Safety, Health, Environment
- Financial Services
- Government & Municipalities
- Land, Mining & Minerals
- Pharmaceutical & Medical
- Professional Services
- Electronic Communication
Lexis Assure customers are further able to select and receive legal content and updates from 13 other African countries.
The Lexis Assure system will help you mitigate your compliance risk, eliminating threats that may impede productivity, while supporting the continued growth of your business.
This article was published in partnership with Lexis Assure.