Nothing conjures more dread in workplace managers than the notification of a scheduled audit. To prepare for a review, managers must compile data and participate in extensive interviews during a SOC (Service and Organizations Control) check. Service organizations have access to sensitive information, and SOC audits ensure that this information is stored securely within an adequately designed system. While audits may seem like significant headaches, they deliver some critical perks. We’ll discuss five of those perks here.
SOC Audits Build Trust Among Your Customers
Companies that use and store sensitive information won’t last long if their customers don’t trust them to store that information securely. Five essential criteria must be in place to gain that trust. The system must be secure against prying eyes. Stored data is readily accessible to meet service levels. Processing is performed in a timely and valid manner. Confidentiality is always adhered to. Finally, privacy concerns are respected throughout the lifetime of the stored information from data collection through data destruction. When customers know you can pass a strict audit meeting these five criteria, you have their trust and their business. A SOC Readiness Assessment will help prepare a company for an inspection.
Scheduled Audits Save Money and Time in the Long Run
Proactive companies schedule their audits before potential new customers ask to see them. By having copies of the audit on hand, there is no need to spend money at the last minute to deliver audit results to gain business. Warning that an audit is on the horizon allows your managers to build time within their standard workweek to gather the necessary materials. Some clients won’t even consider working with a business when an up-to-date SOC audit isn’t available.
System Problems Are Identified and Can Be Corrected
In business as in life, a problem can’t be solved until it is discovered. Internal auditors do an excellent job of maintaining the current system used within a business entity. However, they often operate with blinders on since they are so accustomed to doing things the way they are always done. When auditors are brought in from outside the company, they look at systems with fresh eyes. That’s why they can identify so many problems. They’ll deliver either a Type I or a Type II report. The first examines the suitability of the system, while the second considers the validity of the operations performed.
SOC Compliance Expands the Base of Available Customers
If a service organization hasn’t passed a SOC audit, they can only do business with private companies. That’s becausepublically traded entities are required to do business with trustworthy companies who have passed an SOC audit. The CEO and Board of publically held companies must answer to their stockholders. Indeed, becoming compliant is not an easy task, but the potential increase in business is a benefit that must not be underestimated.
SOC Audits Help Businesses Better Understand Their Own Operations
SOC auditors are trained to dig deep. This examination may uncover problems ranging from data flow to security. Businesses focus on providing a service or product to their customers. They aren’t necessarily experts in data management. Auditors are experts, and their job is to share insights with their clients.
SOC audits provide benefits that business owners may not be aware of. These benefits include higher levels of earned trust, monetary and time savings, corrected problems within a system, a more extensive customer base, and a better understanding of their business operations.