The State of Ethics and Compliance in 2020: A Conversation with Tiffany Archer, Luis Canuto, and Rebecca Turco

Managing successful and effective ethics and compliance programs is never an easy job. When you add a global pandemic with widespread health, wellness, and socioeconomic implications to the mix, on top of new risks, regulations, and cultural movements, things get more complicated. 

As a partner to the ethics and compliance teams at hundreds of global organizations, we've received a lot of relevant and timely questions around the events of 2020, including, for starters:

  • How should I adjust my E&C training program to address COVID-19 and remote work?
  • What is the best way to start transparent conversations around diversity, inclusion, discrimination, and other topics that are more top-of-mind because of the #BlackLivesMatter movement and Supreme Court rulings around LGBTQ employment rights? 
  • Will the DOJ and other regulatory bodies be more lenient or forgiving to our program activity because of the pandemic? 

To provide clarity to our community, our SVP of Learning, Rebecca Turco, spoke with Tiffany Archer and Luis Canuto to get their perspectives on what an effective program looks like at the most fundamental level, and how our current environment puts some of those circumstances to the test. 

Luis is Schindler Elevator's Deputy Group Compliance Officer. Tiffany is a Regional Ethics and Compliance Officer and Corporate Counsel in the Americas and Europe for Panasonic Avionics. We're excited to share their in-the-field experiences and perspective with you all.

That said, we need to provide a disclaimer that should sound familiar for anyone who has attended a live or virtual event in this field: their opinions are their own and do not necessarily reflect those of the organizations they work for! 

Below, you'll find short videos covering the following six questions we discussed during our webinar that was hosted live on June 25, 2020.

Watch the on-demand webinar, “Anatomy of a Best-Practice Compliance Program and Training Experience,” to earn CCB CEU credits.

Q1: During our prep calls for this webinar, we concluded that COVID-19 is not a shield for your ethics and compliance program – it's a springboard. In light of everything happening around the world, how do you plan to bounce forward into 2021 and set your ethics and compliance program up for success?


Q2: The world of ethics and compliance is continually changing the risk of an unexpected pandemic, new DOJ guidelines, new regulations like CCPA, and social and cultural revolutions around equality and bias are all points of emphasis beyond the usual activity and responsibilities.

From your perspective, what does a successful ethics and compliance program look like, what are a few key characteristics it focuses on, and how do you ensure it aligns with the goals of other vital functions?


Q3: It's clear that being successful in ethics and compliance requires a delicate balance and thoughtful, strategic mindset. Looking at our benchmark report data, the top 3 essential elements of designing an E&C program, according to our participants, are:

  • Analyzing the business problem before implementing a training program,
  • Understanding the regulator's requirement for compliance training programs, and
  • Ensuring that the business process and learning outcomes are aligned.

How do you balance traditional E&C program processes with modern and innovative approaches, and how does managing a global program change some of that and add new challenges?


Q4: For the last few months, COVID-19 has forced organizations to adapt to remote work quickly, and that transition presented some challenges for ethics and compliance teams. That includes changes to your risk topics and training areas, and figuring out how to adjust in-person, face to face training to something virtual.

How has your E&C program managed the shift to remote work as a result of COVID-19, and are there any best practices you've found useful from risk management and training perspectives?  


Q5: According to our benchmark data and report, program effectiveness, and the data collected and used to measure program effectiveness are simultaneously one of the highest priorities for ethics and compliance teams, as well as the most significant challenge and pain point.

  • Only 15% are "achieving" their goal of generating meaningful program effectiveness data.
  • When asked, "what barriers do you face in our organization's ethics and compliance program" – the #1 response was measuring effectiveness.  
  • The report emphasized the importance and challenge of measuring program effectiveness.

What data do you find most meaningful to your program, and how do you use it to make decisions? 


Q6: What are your perspectives on the June 2020 DOJ guidance for ethics and compliance programs, as well as your general thoughts on how regulators may view your program during the COVID-19 pandemic?  



If you enjoyed listening to this discussion, you may also enjoy:

  • Downloading a copy of our new 2020 report, “Global Leader Insights: Best Practices for Ethics and Compliance Programs”
  • Watching and reading our “Roundtable Q&A: COVID-19’s Impact on Ethics and Compliance Program and Training”
  • This new blog post from Jon Bricker on “The Great 2020 Pivot: How Ethics & Compliance Teams Can Seize the Moment”


To learn more about how SAI Global can help your ethics and compliance program, visit our website and our pandemic resource center.

  • To join our team for more conversations of this nature, visit our schedule of upcoming and on-demand webinars.
  • To read more perspectives on the evolving world of ethics, compliance, and risk, visit our blog.


For more insights on ethics and compliance, you can follow Tiffany Archer on LinkedIn and Twitter, Luis Canuto on LinkedIn, and SAI Global on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram.

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