An SRA assessment can take place in a number of different ways e.g. they can visit firms at their premises or the assessment can be completed over the telephone. In the case of the FSA they would occasionally meet at say a local hotel.
As far as I’m concerned the vast majority of firms do install a compliance culture within to their operations however the key area where firms usually fall short is based around evidencing it all.
- Regularly reviewing their Management Information and acting upon any issues that arise;
- Reviewing files on a regular basis and ensuring that full CPD records are being maintained;
- In the absence of having automated matter management systems engaging a third party compliance specialist to complete an audit on the firm and reacting to any issues that have been identified;
- Sending client satisfaction questionnaires so that the firm can establish if the client’s expected outcomes have been achieved and allowing the customer to voice any concerns that they may have;
- Reviewing any public facing literature (website, client care letters etc ) to ensure all the content is clear, fair and not misleading;
- Analysing any complaints received to ensure that the same issues don’t crop up again.