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The mere topic of innovation seems to have a watered down meaning in today’s economy. When asked, everyone says it’s important but then most businesses’ funding priorities don’t reflect that thought. Companies want innovation. They want a better way of doing business; they want operations streamlined, efficient, and compliant, along with any other ‘buzz’ word that comes to mind. However, seldom do you hear about businesses taking a proactive approach when it comes to meeting these demands. Decision makers tell managers to be “Lean” and cut costs and oh, by the way, don’t forget to stay innovative and keep our competitive edge.

Being a lean organization is not a bad thing. Just as long as it doesn’t completely starve and eventually kill off innovation. Innovation takes investment at first, but it usually leads to those principles of efficiency and cost cutting. It also can lead to keeping your business safe from external and internal threats. Yes, I am talking about that dreaded principle of RISK.

Minimizing risk and ensuring the principles of compliance is of course important to most—so how can innovation help? Innovation can lead to doing business better, especially when it comes to Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC). My advice is: don’t wait for a failed audit, a case of fraud or prolonged high administration costs to bring compliance initiatives to the forefront. Take a proactive approach by leveraging technology and expertise that will give these challenges visibility and make your company safe from internal and external threats, across the board. Innovation in GRC is the “Friendly” initial investment that will lead to risk control and cost cutting efficiency.

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