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14 Ways Vendor Risk Management Software and Services Help

3 min read
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Over the past several years, there has been an increase in the complexity of vendor risk management and its requirements. Vendor risk management teams must pay attention to new factors such as subservice organizations (fourth parties), regulatory updates, supply chain interruptions, and more rigorous due diligence expectations required to meet basic expectations and best practices.

Despite the hard work your team puts in, staying on top of all new vendor threats is no easy task and can be challenging. The good news is that some solutions can help your team better manage their time and capacity to meet their responsibilities and safeguard your organization. Let’s explore these solutions and how they can help your organization.

Look Back: Vendor Management 2022

There’s no denying that the impact of third-party data breaches, new legislation, updated regulations, and disruptions to the supply chain in 2022 underscored the need for vendor risk management programs capable of managing these risks. For some organizations, keeping up with the regulations, meeting oversight requirements, and staying on top of hundreds (or thousands) of vendors has become overwhelming. 

Vendor risk management teams have become inundated by the sheer number of tasks, including managing workflows, keeping an updated vendor inventory, managing issues, and requesting, reviewing, and assessing vendor documents and questionnaires. It’s no wonder that vendor risk management can sometimes feel like an impossible chore. Still, with the high regulator, investor, and customer expectations, vendor risk management can’t be ignored. 

As today’s standards and requirements continue to evolve, it’s necessary to become more strategic, maximize your resources, and improve your vendor management processes to ensure optimum effectiveness and efficiency. Vendor risk management software and services can help your organization achieve its vendor risk management goals.

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The 14 Ways Vendor Risk Management Software and Services Help

Keeping track of and managing all the interdependent inputs, outputs, and processes required for vendor management is no small task. In contrast to outdated manual processes, which can be error-prone and inefficient, specialized vendor risk management software offers sophisticated tools that can help streamline workflows, automate processes, manage documentation and vendor inventory, consolidate stakeholder communications, set automated task reminders, generate detailed reporting, and more. This can save your team precious time and resources, all while dramatically improving your vendor risk management capabilities.

However, effective vendor risk management requires more than just software. You'll also need skilled and experienced people on your vendor management team. However, it’s important to remember that only some teams can handle all tasks. For example, only some have the knowledge to review and analyze key documents. The detailed review and analysis of vendor risk questionnaires and control documentation often requires qualified and credentialed experts' specific risk domain expertise. 

To augment your team’s capabilities, it may make sense to outsource specific tasks and functions to professional vendor management services organizations, which will give you access to certified professionals such as Paralegals, CPAs, CISSPs, and more. Beyond subject matter expertise, a professional vendor management services company can take on high-effort but low-value administrative tasks such as vendor risk questionnaires and diligence document requests, collection, organization, and preparation for subject matter expert reviews.

Here are 14 advantages of using vendor management software and services:

  1. Centralized vendor management across the organization
  2. Increased efficiency and bandwidth
  3. Reduced number of errors and rework compared to manual processes
  4. Streamlined and automated workflows
  5. Standardized tools and processes for rating vendor risk and criticality
  6. Enhanced and automated record keeping
  7. Automated scheduling tools and reminders ensure that key dates are managed
  8. Vendor issue management tracking and reporting
  9. Vendor documents stored with vendor record
  10. Single document repository, which can be stored in the cloud
  11. Documented vendor risk and performance management 
  12. Automated reporting
  13. Better organization enables easier audit and exam preparation
  14. Access subject matter expertise to manage key risk issues and activities appropriately

Even with the best efforts, it’s impossible to compensate for poor vendor risk management tools and processes. To stay ahead of today's evolving vendor risk, organizations must think strategically and use the best tools available. For many teams, utilizing vendor risk management software and services is the best way to maximize their resources, improve program effectiveness, and manage vendor risk more efficiently. If you’re noticing limitations in your current process, now is the perfect time for your organization to consider vendor management software and services.

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