IBM RegTech Innovations

The challenge of managing hundreds of daily GRC alerts

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Today we are inundated with alerts, breaking news, celebrity scandals and what their neighbor had for lunch.  The feeds are not limited to one medium; your computer, your television, your phone, your tablet and now even the watch you wear on your wrist. The flood of data that comes in can bury a person. How is anyone intended to consume it all?  So, here are some answers . . .

There are several approaches: Turn off notifications on certain devices, limit the social media feeds you subscribe to (but who really does that?), use filters and identify what is significant to you. Most importantly, identify trustworthy sources of information.

I bet you thought this blog was going to be how to manage all the data in your social life . . . sorry, it’s not. I want to discuss how the increasing amount of data can be tackled in the compliance world.  My career has been focused on representing financial institutions. While the burden of regulatory compliance for banks is well established, the following thoughts expand beyond banks and should hit home for any industry that is regulated, or just needs help in their governance, risk and compliance (GRC) programs.

Compliance programs can come in all shapes and sizes. Regardless of the complexity, in order to have a successful compliance program, two requirements are constant:  1) A defined structure in which to manage your program and 2) trusted data to fuel your program.

IBM OpenPages with Watson is designed to improve the user experience in their GRC process – it provides the structure needed to manage an end-to-end compliance program across the enterprise. As you may know (get ready for the plug . . . ), IBM recently released a new version of OpenPages with Watson (see David Marmer’s blog GRC is Everyone’s Business to learn more). In this release, the Regulatory Compliance Management (RCM) module was an area of focus.

Why OpenPages with Watson?

During the planning stages, the OpenPages team collaborated with leading industry compliance experts to innovate enhancements that support the solution’s RCM module.  A recurring theme we heard was about the continually growing number of regulatory alerts year over year. The process of reviewing regulatory alerts each day is often tedious and manual. In that light, the challenge we worked to solve was:  How can a GRC solution help manage the monitoring and triage of hundreds of daily regulatory alerts?

Specific to the upgrades for the Regulatory Change Management module, RCM will:

  • Uniquely position clients to meet industry requirements for horizon scanning and regulatory change management
  • Provide comprehensive horizon scanning of regulatory alerts, through IBM’s partnerships with industry leading 3rd party content
  • Deliver automated notification of regulatory events to subscribers and designated subject matter experts, through business-authored embedded workflow that were introduced with OpenPages with Watson 8
  • Link obligations to controls for integrated GRC
  • Provide a holistic view of the status of assessments and impact analysis, with Cognos Analytics

As an Offering Manager for RCM, I am proud of the product that keeps evolving to change with the regulatory landscape – and to be able to satisfy our client’s GRC needs. The new release means that the engine is primed and ready to be used in any compliance program, in any industry.

But it is not enough to just build a great engine, if we do not fill it with fuel. Not just any fuel, like the lawn mower fuel I use to throw in my car in high school when I was low on funds, but high-octane fuel that can be trusted to be pure and not full of additives. So where does a compliance officer find the correct fuel? Enter the OpenPages Data partner network.

OpenPages Data partner network

OpenPages partners with industry leading content providers that match IBM’s own high standards and that will add a value to our clients.  IBM evaluates the structure and completeness of the data and assesses the market’s opinion of trustworthiness.  Once content providers partner with OpenPages, we work together to bring the data into OpenPages for use by our mutual clients. It is this partnership that helps fuel the OpenPages engine with the high-octane fuel needed to run our clients’ GRC programs.

The IBM OpenPages with Watson team is thrilled to announce Wolters Kluwer as the newest member of our Data partner network. Wolters Kluwer brings global regulatory coverage including 128 jurisdictions made up of 687 regulatory bodies. The partnership includes Wolters Kluwer’s market leading position in all segments of the U.S. Insurance industry, with NILS INsource providing the foundation for success.

The WK smart content advantage includes:

  • Tailorable content to reduce noise
  • Pre-enriched and linked to regulatory rules, and therefore immediately applicative
  • Focus time on business impact and action vs. time on enrichment and determination of applicability
  • Single data feed format simplifying integration and making reporting easier and more accurate

If you are interested in becoming a member of our data partnership network, please contact me at

Learn more at

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