To paraphrase an old saying, no one ever laid on their deathbed wishing they had spent more time on compliance. Nevertheless, there are quite a few people working for Registered Investment Advisers and broker-dealers who wish they had devoted more time to compliance before examiners came to inspect their firms.
SEC enforcement actions have targeted individuals who might have enjoyed life more if they had increased their compliance knowledge. Perhaps, these individuals thought that compliance matters were on a need to know basis, and they had no need to know all that much about them. The reality is that every member of a firm should know about compliance. Ideally, attendees will share the lessons learned at a conference with all of their colleagues upon their return to the office.
Learning more about compliance helps to improve customer service and protect investors. For example, when Attorney Alan Foxman discusses best practices and initiatives for senior investors at the NCS Regulatory Compliance conference on June 21 through June 23, attendees will learn what steps they can take to help their older clients cope with the inevitable issues that go hand-in-hand with aging. They will also hear about procedures that can be implemented to avoid legal and regulatory pitfalls.
Compliance conferences can help attendees learn first-hand about regulatory developments that are on the horizon and give their input. They will have the opportunity to vent their frustration with overly-burdensome regulations and to suggest improvements. At the NCS Regulatory Compliance conference, attendees will hear from Jim Reese, Acting Chief Risk and Strategy Officer for the Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations. In a keynote session moderated by David Lui, editor of Modern Compliance: Best Practices for Securities & Finance, Jim will explain the impact of risk on the compliance process and the changing landscape of the SEC’s examination program. Andrew J. “Buddy” Donohue, former SEC Chief of Staff, will be a Keynote Speaker. Buddy has over 40 years of securities law experience and will share his thoughts and insights on the regulatory environment, as well as attendees’ role and their obligations.
The issues discussed at compliance conferences have far-reaching implications. For instance, having a detailed disaster recovery and business continuity plan will serve firms well as they prepare for every contingency that might shut down their operations – except for the zombie apocalypse or when the robots rise up and become our overlords. Similarly, attendees at a compliance conference will walk away with guidance on innovative technology tools and how to implement a cybersecurity plan.
Aside from learning about real world compliance issues from the professionals in the trenches, conferences offer a wealth of networking opportunities in a serene setting. Firms can learn new ways to market their services in a compliant manner.
Finally, attending a compliance conference demonstrates to securities regulators that a firm is committed to being compliant. It also helps to show that a firm is doing its best to create a culture of compliance.
Hopefully, readers won’t think I’m overselling the value of attending the NCS Regulatory Compliance conference at the EAU Palm Beach Resort and Spa on June 21 through 23, 2017. If I were going to hype the conference, I certainly would have promised attendees that they would learn about a business continuity plan that does address the risk of a zombie apocalypse or a robot uprising.
Les Abromovitz can be reached at NCS Regulatory Compliance by calling 561-570-1813 or by e-mailing him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Les is the author of THE INVESTMENT ADVISOR’S COMPLIANCE GUIDE, which was published by the National Underwriter Company, a division of ALM. The second edition was published in February, 2017, and is now available at https://www.nationalunderwriter.com/the-investment-advisor-s-compliance-guide-2nd-edition-epub-bundle.html.