Stone Arch
Managing Corporate Governance Just Got Easier
There’s bad news and good news. The bad news is that, according to a recent study by AMR, over 69% of compliance costs are labor related, spent on things like internal staff and consultants. The good news, according to the same AMR study, is that on average, most companies can save 25% or more on corporate governance compliance through the use of labor saving technologies like software. Perhaps the best news of all is that with StoneArch Software realizing these benefits just got easier.
Where We Can Help
StoneArch Software is designed to meet the needs of all of your enterprise compliance and corporate governance initiatives and can be deployed as part of broader enterprise-wide risk management strategy that includes addressing common corporate governance initiatives such as:
  • Corporate Policy Management
  • Stock Options Grant Management
  • Company Ethics Management
The $618 Million Stock Options Tracking Failure
The cost of compliance failures can be staggering. As a result, corporations seem to be getting message – follow the rules or be prepared to face severe consequences. Consider the case of Dr. McGuire and UnitedHealth Group:
Dr. William McGuire, the former chief executive of UnitedHealth Group who lost his job a year ago in the wake of a stock options scandal, agreed Thursday to surrender an additional $420 million in options and other benefits he obtained while running the nation’s biggest health insurer…The blockbuster settlement, with a total value of $618 million, is the largest to date in backdating scandals that roiled corporate America in 2006… If you were another CEO and you were caught up in a stock options scandal, this is the kind of thing that would make you nervous.” Minneapolis Star Tribune, 12/6/07
As a result, corporations and their executives seem to be getting message; implement sustainable corporate governance controls or be prepared to face severe consequences. In general, it is not uncommon for corporations experiencing corporate governance failures to experience one or more of the following:
  • Fines
  • Criminal penalties
  • Lost contracts
  • Work stoppage
  • Lawsuits
The StoneArch Difference
StoneArch’s solutions are easy to install, easy to use and have a lower total cost of ownership. Our software has been designed to manage and automate each step in the corporate governance compliance process to save time, automate repetitive tasks and reduce errors. The bottom line impact: fewer corporate governance compliance failures, lower corporate governance compliance costs and reduced corporate governance compliance risk.
The Corporate Governance Process
If you are like most companies, you began by using manual processes to understand “how to get compliant.” This probably involved hiring consultants, trial and error and dependence on manual, labor intensive practices.
StoneArch Software includes a document management system and workflow tools that were designed with these steps in mind, to automate the entire corporate governance compliance process. Processes include:
Documentation: The first step in the process is defining the key processes and controls. Processes and controls are revised and edited as necessary. Documents are approved by the appropriate person(s) and become available to distribute throughout the organization.  StoneArch’s software manages this process as described by the Committee of Sponsoring Organizations (COSO) framework to enable collaboration yet maintain strong document controls.
Publishing: All compliance documentation is stored in a single, centralized repository allowing process owners, executives and auditors access through an easy to use, secure, web-native interface. Only the latest, approved versions are accessible reducing time and duplication of effort.
Certification: It is necessary to validate that the organization is in compliance with corporate governance controls on a regular basis. If certification tests fail, issues and improvement plans need to be documented and tracked through the process.
Reporting Tools: The status of the organization’s compliance must be available at any time. Reports and dashboards provide full and complete information on the status of all compliance tasks throughout your organization. Provided are macro-level views of any step in the corporate governance process with the ability to drill-down to specific details in seconds.
Workflow Automation: An embedded workflow engine automates the movement and tracking of content, allowing tasks to be prioritized, distributed and handled by multiple workgroups and individuals for completion. Processes are supported with event triggers to facilitate document reviews and test activities. It tracks and notifies where you are in the compliance corporate governance process with activities, improvement plans and remediations; all necessary to meet your audit deadlines.
Audit Trails: Audit trails are available for all events including editing, approvals, accessing documents, and checking documents out of the system. This information is accessible by any authorized user.
Security: All access is performed using web-based protocols.  A strong security layer that protects all information is held within the database.  Because of this, all information can be securely accessed using an Internet connection and controlled using the administration tools available within the solution.
Why Automate?
Customers tell us there are a host of reasons to automate including saving money, eliminating mundane, repetitive tasks and reducing the risk of compliance failures. With manual systems, too many things are left to fall through the cracks. In short – you need to have sustainable corporate governance processes.  Common problems include:
  • Tracking issues
  • Inconsistent certification testing
  • Unresolved compliance failures
  • Using unauthorized documents
  • Policy and control distribution
  • Lack of clear, defensible audit trails
  • Document security and change control
  • Cumbersome reporting
  • Critical errors due to inaccurate data
  • Wasted time using inefficient manual processes
Make Your Life Easier. Talk to StoneArch
Are you ready for an easier way to manage risk? Call StoneArch to find out how you can reduce effort, shorten compliance cycles, increase accuracy, reduce corporate governance compliance failures and lower your company’s exposure.
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