Business Continuity

A Beginner’s Guide to Business Compliance

SAP Concur Team |

No matter how carefully you plan, in business the future is filled with unknowns. One thing you can likely count on, though, is that managing compliance will not get easier. Consider, for instance, changing government and tax regulations. Or environmental mandates, cybersecurity risks, and the potential for fraud all around. And of course, the new challenge on the block, artificial intelligence (AI).

With complexities coming from many directions, it’s not surprising that 77% of business leaders say detecting and managing risk is harder than ever before, or that 72% say their risk management capabilities haven’t kept up.1 To help your business navigate the future, we produced a new eBook with Accenture that examines internal and external compliance areas leaders can focus on.

Turning Compliance Requirements into Business Opportunities

Explore the compliance challenges around tax digitization, ESG, AI, cybersecurity, and internal spending, and how intelligent solutions help you address them.

Get the ebook

How to keep up with regulations and tax digitization

With governments across the globe digitizing tax and other financial reporting and collection processes, businesses must stay in step or risk running afoul of regulators. The shift to more hybrid and remote work models further complicates the jurisdictional and logistical challenge. Spending and tax management solutions allow companies to simplify and streamline global processes, such as identifying all taxable spend and reclaimable value-added tax (VAT), for a comprehensive strategy instead of a country-by-country approach. By leveraging the real-time data these solutions provide, you can keep up with the changing tax landscape, automate tedious manual processes, benefit from improved VAT reclaim, and achieve better overall compliance.

Where to start and improve ESG compliance

Driven by regulators as well as the desire to do the right thing, businesses must face the fact that once-optional environmental, sustainability, and governance (ESG) guidelines are now becoming mandatory. But creating, integrating, and reporting on sustainability initiatives is a task that’s difficult for many businesses to initiate and optimize. Solutions that leverage data and AI can help organizations with collecting, managing, and analyzing data, as well as tracking, visualizing, and sharing ongoing impact with stakeholders. They can also integrate ESG considerations into your travel and expense processes to guide employees toward modes of travel with a smaller carbon footprint.

As AI evolves, so do compliance risks

It’s tempting to be entranced by the potential AI brings to business processes and spend management, since AI-powered tools can check every expense, thwart fraud, ensure compliance with regulations, and boost productivity and efficiency. But AI technologies also bring potential privacy and security risks if not deployed responsibly. Business leaders must develop an organizational culture of responsible AI by establishing global principles, policies, and frameworks around ethical AI use that align with their corporate values and goals. Creating guidelines now – and adapting them as needed – better positions your company for maintaining compliance in the long term.

Data security challenges and risks grow

With the widespread transformation from on premise systems to cloud-based infrastructure, cybersecurity is an ever-growing concern for businesses and a focus of regulators worldwide. While companies have security and ethnical responsibilities to their customers, they also must satisfy expanding regulations about how they collect, process, use, and store customers’ personal data.

Understanding the scope of your organization’s attack surface, what types of data you have, and the requirements for protecting it will help you develop robust security measures, which may include identity management, employee training, and regular security audits. By building a strong foundation for data security today, your business can be ready as requirements and needs scale up.

Internal spend compliance cannot be ignored

Fraud often originates close to home, with employee theft estimated to cost trillions each year. The shift to remote and hybrid work has resulted in more expense reports with less on-site supervision, so finance teams and processes must do all they can to strengthen internal spending compliance – both to catch fraud and resolve the inevitable honest mistakes. Automated solutions that scan each invoice, capture every travel booking, and link to ERP and other finance systems can give businesses the visibility they need to quickly adjust spend policies and maintain compliance.

Learn more: Compliance resources and solutions

Read the eBook for more insights on key compliance issues companies face. In addition to insights and best practices, you can access resources from SAP Concur  to hone your approach and learn how our automated, intelligent solutions can help a business surmount its compliance challenges.


1.Risk Study: 2024 Edition, Accenture.


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