ICT Views

There’s never been a better time to work in compliance. Really? Really.

by: (Associate Director, Research and Development) on

Or at least, that’s what our latest ICT email strapline says. And we wouldn’t lie to you.

(By the way, when I say compliance, I’m talking about ‘regulatory compliance’ – so including anti-money laundering and financial crime under the broad umbrella term). (The slogan would be considerably less catchy otherwise).

So the question is surely - why is it so good at the moment?

Times they are a-changing

The main reason is that compliance is really under the spotlight. Maybe that’s not the best way of putting it though. Maybe it is better described as ‘emerging into the light’. Like a sleeping chrysalis from which emerges a beautiful compliance butterfly.

OK – maybe that’s too far the other way. The point I’m trying to make is that for many years compliance was seen as something which was, frankly, a bit dull. You weren’t involved in the rest of the business. In fact, if you had your way, there wouldn’t be much of a business – as then there wouldn’t be anything non-compliant taking place.

By and large, firms didn’t ask compliance people to be involved. If compliance didn’t know you existed, so much the better. Heaven forbid they found out who you were; or you got called up there (Jeff from Accounts went up to compliance once – no-one ever saw him again…)

But now?

But now the compliance professional is pretty much in the centre of an organisation. No longer is it about box-ticking or rubber stamping. Firms now want engaging and knowledgeable compliance people. They’ve cottoned on to the idea that it works better to ask compliance people’s opinions early on, rather than waiting until something has gone wrong to give them a shout and see if they can fix it somehow.

smiling thumbs up

Designing a new product? Let’s involve compliance!

What’s the regulatory standpoint on it? What delivery channels are you intending to use? Into which jurisdictions might you place it? To what sort of customers?

Compliance professionals are essentially risk managers – so ask them about the risk! They might be able to save you grief now – or even add in something the business hadn’t thought of (as commercial acumen is another skill of ‘new-school’ compliance people).

Anything else?

Let’s recap. We’ve quickly covered off that compliance professionals at the moment:

  • Are important
  • Are listened to
  • Have a central role to play in a firm

All of which sounds great. Anything else to share?

Well yes. You are in demand. Very much in demand. Robert Walters recently released a hiring survey which confirmed the opportunities out there in compliance and the difficulties firms are encountering in sourcing the staff they need.

And big demand means good salaries.

Robert Walters labelled Risk and Compliance professionals the biggest winners, while the Wall St Journal ran a similar story, detailing how Compliance is booming.

Where will it all lead?

The indicators seem to point towards the continued growth of compliance.

The media scrutiny, the amount of enforcement actions, the public interest and the increased amount of regulatory burden all suggest this is a trend which will continue. So maybe you should ask yourself – has there ever been a better time to work in compliance?

Don’t just take our word for it. Find out for yourself. 

For more details of ICA’s professional qualifications in compliance offered by ICT visit /qualifications/


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