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According to IDEO, Design thinking utilizes elements from the designer’s toolkit like empathy and experimentation to arrive at innovative solutions. By using design thinking, you make decisions based on what future customers really want instead of relying only on historical data or making risky bets based on instinct instead of evidence.

With design thinking now gaining importance in business situations, compliance management is also set to benefit from the methodology.

Compliance managers can use in Design thinking for a compliance program to improve the overall compliance system for their stakeholders i.e. employees, investors and third parties. With every stakeholder involved in compliance on a daily basis, compliance is now in the DNA of the organization. As we, at VComply, say “Where there is responsibility, there is compliance.” However, tracking compliance has always been an issue due to complex systems. With design thinking, develop a compliance infrastructure which mirrors the way people do compliance so that compliance becomes easy and interactive.

The first component of design thinking is to Empathize with the user. Focus on the users’ experience with compliance. In compliance management, this could be done by analyzing the user touch points with the compliance management and can be re-designed around user’s needs rather than on operational efficiencies.

The next step is to Define the problem associated with the present compliance management system. With the complexity high, it might be very difficult to define all the problems. Enlist maximum major problems and prioritize them based on the impact of the compliance function. For example, a major hurdle in implementing effective compliance management is the training of the employees. Improper training would lead to incoherence in the business function leading to increased risk exposure. Arrive at a single problem statement towards which design thinkers will work upon.

The next step is to Ideate on all possible solutions to overcome the problem. Ideating requires the engagement of cross-domain experts. An internal team of cross-function and sector-based employees would help develop a single idea which would cater to problems faced by multiple functions. End-user involvement would help develop idea best suited for his work as it is for them the solution should ease their work. For example, if the end user feels the training is not having relevance to his compliance function, possibly redesigning the training to include real-time compliance laws and functions and sharing of cross-function experience might help in effective training.

The next step is to develop a Prototype. Develop a prototype model which should be tested in real-time. For example, if the present compliance function was too complex to understand, develop a prototype of the compliance system and run a test in real-time. Iteration holds the key to successful prototype and testing.

The last step is to Test the platform. Get the system in front of the user and record his experience. The best system is the one which the user easily understands. Gauge the user experience, analyze for any difficulties and pre-prototype. Iterative prototyping and testing would help deliver a very easy to use and integrated compliance management system.

VComply is developed using the steps of Design Thinking and many organizations across the globe have successfully adopted VComply for all of their compliance requirements.

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