6 time-saving tips for KYB compliance in legal firms

Know Your Business (KYB) compliance is essential for legal firms operating in the UK, but the burden of ensuring thorough due diligence while maintaining efficiency can be significant. To help navigate these challenges, here are 6 handy time-saving tips for KYB compliance in your legal firm. 

1. Make use of technology and automation in your KYB process

Embracing technology is the most impactful way to save time on KYB compliance. Automated systems can handle routine tasks such as data collection, verification, and monitoring, significantly reducing manual workload. 

Tools like electronic identity verification (ID&V) services, automated KYB risk assessment platforms, and compliance software can streamline KYB processes, ensuring accuracy and efficiency.

These tools not only speed up processes but also reduce human error and allow for better scalability, handling large volumes of data efficiently. By integrating these technologies into your firm’s workflow, you can focus more on strategic decision-making and less on repetitive tasks.

2. Integrate KYB in the client onboarding process 

Integrating KYB checks seamlessly into the new client onboarding process can be a game-changer for legal firms, offering a more efficient and streamlined approach to compliance. By making KYB an integral part of the client onboarding process, legal firms can ensure that all necessary compliance checks are conducted right from the start. This involves embedding KYB procedures into the initial stages of the client relationship, ensuring that due diligence is completed early and thoroughly.

This proactive approach helps identify potential compliance issues early, allowing for quick resolution or decision-making about whether to proceed with the client. By optimising resources, compliance teams can focus on verifying new clients as they come in, rather than dealing with backlogs or re-checks later.

3. Centralise compliance management and global data sources

Having a central, single database for KYB checks and data sources can save considerable time. It doesn’t make much sense to have a separate standalone solution for KYB checks and multiple data sources when, ideally, the two should be combined for a single 360-degree view of each KYB case. 

🔗 Overcoming global data challenges in KYB

Whether client-supplied documentation or information from corporate registries on UBOs and company directors; using a centralised compliance case management solution that unifies your firm’s workflows and compliance processes with reputable data sources minimises the time spent searching for information and documents, and ensures consistency in the information being used.

4. Ensure regular staff training and education

Continuous training and education for compliance officers and staff are crucial. Keeping up to date with the latest regulations, trends, and technologies ensures that your team can work efficiently and effectively. Regular training sessions can also help staff recognise and mitigate potential compliance issues early on, saving time on rectifying problems later.

Up-to-date knowledge ensures that staff are aware of the latest regulations, enabling them to handle compliance tasks more quickly and accurately. Investing in regular training not only enhances your team’s capabilities but also fosters a proactive approach to compliance.

5. Develop comprehensive KYB policies and procedures

Having clear, detailed KYB policies and procedures in place can save a significant amount of time. These documents should outline the steps to be taken during the compliance process, the roles and responsibilities of each team member, and the criteria for risk evaluation. This can prevent delays and confusion, ensuring a smooth compliance journey for both your compliance team and your client.

Comprehensive policies provide clarity, ensuring that everyone understands their roles and responsibilities, which in turn ensures uniformity in compliance practices. By streamlining the compliance process, these policies and procedures can significantly enhance the efficiency of your KYB efforts.

🔗 7 ways to streamline KYB compliance processes for legal firms

6. Allow clients to self-serve

Remote KYB onboarding solutions, such as WorkStation from NorthRow, that allow clients to self-serve, can greatly enhance the efficiency and security of KYB compliance processes in legal firms. These solutions provide a centralised, secure platform where clients can upload required documentation and sensitive information directly to your firm’s compliance team, reducing your dependence on clients to provide critical information via post or email, and minimising the time spent chasing them for updates. 

By using a central hub for compliance, firms can ensure that data is sent and stored securely, reducing the risk of data breaches and ensuring compliance with data protection regulations such as the GDPR.

Collecting client documentation this way minimises the need for back-and-forth communication, accelerates the verification process, and enhances the overall client experience by making it easier for clients to provide the necessary information promptly. What’s more, with all client documents and information stored in a single, accessible location, compliance officers can quickly and efficiently access and review the materials needed for KYB checks and onboard corporate clients quickly and compliantly. 

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