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What is the single most challenging Sarbanes-Oxley issue today?

Johannes Scholtes
ZyLAB North America

Ongoing vigilance. Today, most organizations are working to get compliant on some level trying to establish appropriate records management processes, buying the tools they feel will help drive compliance initiatives, and getting employee buy-in to support compliance activities. The single most challenging SOX issue at this moment is how organizations can stay compliant. In other words, after the initial rush to get compliant, how will the processes, tools and employee support endure over the long haul?

The attention meter is on throughout corporate America to address SOX. Many SOX compliance initiatives are focused on archiving of key financial information or information and documents related to business transactions. An assumed, but sometimes ignored, component of compliance is vigilance  making sure that financial fraud is not taking place. What was once the domain of government watchdogs and fraud detection agencies has now shifted to internal corporate audit departments and legal counsel.

There are a lot of different sections to the SOX act but most especially relevant for corporate users is the need to protect and be able to retrieve the information assets of the organization related to financial transactions and reporting. Making sure a corporation is compliant demands more than just filing the right papers and saving the associated documentation. It also demands vigilance. ZyLABs content management and compliance solutions aid corporate fraud and internal audit departments in their efforts to not only comply with SOX but to remain vigilant in the face of potential corporate wrongdoing.

Under Sarbanes-Oxley, corporate auditors have to do more than just certify that the companys financial statements comply with generally accepted accounting practices and comparables from the year before. They are now attesting that the numbers and all the information linked to those numbers are reliable. CEOs must not only sign off on all of these figures, they must also sign off on the fact that their companies have not been involved with any questionable financial trading practices, that their independent auditors are truly independent and that they have mechanisms in place to prove that all public information is true. In many cases, corporate officers are signing based on their faith that their internal systems are truly auditable and documents can be fully recovered.

Using ZyLABs ZyIMAGE solution, integrated with standard records management practices and procedures, its possible to create a full audit trail of how and why important decisions were made. This process includes searching through e-mail, paperwork and electronic files. ZyIMAGE can save a tremendous amount of both the cost and time associated with filing documents and ultimately retrieving them when required. ZyIMAGEs XML-based filing structure provides an open, sustainable, flexible and scalable architecture for managing disparate sets of document repositories.

When it comes to legal fees, time translates to cost and if organizations can save time with regard to managing contracts, conducting due diligence, supporting merger and acquisition activities and other Corporate Counsel initiatives, they are also saving money. Because ZyIMAGE works without using large databases and doesnt require full-time IT support, it can be easily integrated into existing business applications at a fairly low cost. In fact, a full-scale implementation for Corporate Board applications costs only around $20,000.

As in football, it is widely known that the best offense is a good defense. When it comes to government regulations and protecting the assets of organizations, the best defense may be compliance, but better compliance comes with ongoing internal vigilance and investigative support. ZyLAB has the tools and experience to support any type of SOX offensive.

Founded in 1983, ZyLAB is an innovative developer of content management and compliance solutions for paper intensive organizations. The companys solutions help Global 2000 companies and government organizations digitally file and manage millions of pages of paper and electronic documents. ZyLABs comprehensive investigative capabilities, with its high quality search and retrieval features supporting over 200 languages, gives users the ability to organize and easily share all information online. With over 7,000 installations worldwide and over 300,000 users, ZyLAB has a wide breadth of experience and knowledge across a variety of different industries and business applications. For more information visit:


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