Mis Selling and Risk Mitigation: Are you Compliant or Complicit?

Posted by Karl Davis on 17-Sep-2015 17:07:00

Pushy sales. Misleading wording. Outright lies.

Unethical business practices don’t just leave consumers with a bad taste in their mouth: they have serious consequences for utility companies as a whole, ruining reputations, destroying consumer trust and racking up eye-watering fines.

What’s more, when your role is to keep your firm on the straight and narrow, letting your colleagues walk into a mis-selling scandal is potentially career suicide, too.

And while you might do your level best to promote best practice behaviour among your colleagues, making sure you’re fully compliant with industry rules, monitoring a large and widely dispersed workforce can be a superhuman task. Particularly when you’re handing full responsibility to the individual to meet their regulatory and legal obligations across all finance, sales, IT and data protection activities.

And no matter how much you emphasise the importance of doing things by the book, no matter how much you try to foster a culture of personal responsibility in your organisation, there is no guarantee that all of the people will follow all of the rules, all of the time.

After all, when it comes to compliance, human error is typically the weakest link in the chain. Eventually, someone will slip up – or worse, deliberately break the rules for their own gain.

And it only takes one rogue seller to spark a PR – or potentially a legal – disaster.

It’s simply not enough to leave these things to chance. While you need to give people the space and freedom to do their jobs, a sensible risk mitigation strategy means that there are some things you can’t permit to happen.

 

At times like these, you need a rock-solid, incorruptible, technological intervention.

Shifting your workforce onto Field Force Automation (FFA) means that you can effectively control the most crucial steps in the sale, even while teams are out in the field.

That’s because FFA allows you to digitise the process, giving your salespeople a clear, pre-vetted structure and wording to follow, with automatic prompts to ensure that they give the buyer all the necessary information along the way, before the sale is closed.

Customer information is safely entered into the system in real time, cutting down the danger of administration errors or data leakage when this is manually copied from paper to screen, of from system to system. Background checks are done on-the-spot, ensuring that the proper procedures are followed at every step of the way.

New clients can see for themselves how the process is being managed, helping them to feel secure and well looked after by your firm. They’re given all the essential details they need to know about the contract their getting themselves into, helping to ensure that they’re not left feeling uncertain, short-changed, or disgruntled – and that you’re not going to be stung with a negative review, or courting bad press.

All of which gives you a clear record of your firm’s protocol, helping to avoid uncertainties over what customers are told and how this is information is delivered, in addition to ensuring the back office records are synched and updated in realtime.

 

Plus, for your team out in field, shifting the compliance burden to a fixed, automated system can be a load off their minds.

It means that they have a clear, efficient system for approaching a sale, speeding up the process and racing through leads without letting their standards slip.

It means that they can tick off key compliance obligations as they go, avoiding any accusations of mis-selling or deception in the future.

And it means that they can’t get caught up in the pressure of making a sale, forgetting or being tempted to omit essential information in order to hit targets at any cost.

All of which makes adopting FFA a win-win-win solution for you, your team and your customers.

It means you can put your mind to rest that you’ve done everything in your power to protect your clients, your colleagues and your company’s reputation, ensuring that you’re fully compliant - and never complicit.

Want to learn more about how Field Force Automation can reduce the stress of compliance in your company? Click below to download our FREE ebook.

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