Regulation and compliance have become increasingly important

ELCA prepared an “audit-proof” archiving system for a very large audit firm

14.08.2018

Compliance is one of today’s buzzwords. And it always means the same thing: stick to the rules and the regulations – and prove you’ve done so. This not only applies to companies being approved on a regular basis, e.g., for certifications or audits, it also applies to audit firms themselves. They also must be able to store their results “audit-proof” and meet the regulations.

Depending on the topic of a mandate, the documents need to be stored for 10 or 20 years, or even longer. Not only storage, but also disposal after the archiving period is important. These retention and disposal rules are stated in diverse regulations (e.g., GDPR).

 

One of the biggest audit firms in Switzerland asked ELCA to assist it in finding the right solution for a company-wide legal archiving platform to relieve the in-house digital workplace based on SharePoint. The enormous growth of data to be stored placed a heavy load on the infrastructure and affected performance. The right archiving solution should ease this heavy burden on the system and guarantee a performant and stable digital workplace. Additionally, the integration of the archiving solution needed to be seamless and not visible to users – their workflows should not be affected.

 

Audit mandates must be stored according to Swiss regulations

 

When a business mandate of the auditor is finished, the workspace will be closed. This means the corresponding documents are no longer needed for daily access and are set as “read only”. This can easily be done by establishing a dedicated archive solution where the documents are stored for a certain period of time according to Swiss legal requirements, such as the Swiss Code of Obligations (CO), Laws on Value Added Tax, the Ordinance Concerning Electronically Transmitted Data and Information (EIDI-V) and many more.

 

The documents no longer overload the digital workplace (which also means that the expensive SharePoint infrastructure is relieved and the client saves money).

 

ELCA recommended EASY Archive

 

ELCA analyzed the client’s situation and requirements and evaluated archiving options. The client wanted a seamlessly integrated result, so we introduced a very lean archive solution to the customer that was easy to install and has low demands on infrastructure. It’s also low cost and easy to operate. A proof of concept verified that the proposed solution from EASY Software (EASY is a leading Archive Solutions Manufacturer from Germany) fit the needs of the customer best.

 

We helped the client to implement and set up the solution and supported the SharePoint integration. The solution also comprises a web client, which is used by the legal department and access management. It offers additional functionalities such as legal hold functionalities and changing responsibilities (e.g., change of the mandate ‘owner’), permission management (this must be kept up-to-date, so that even when people leave the company), records management or additional search options, audit log, etc.,  to these users. The features needed to come either “out of the box” or were easy to implement. As a result, the client has all the functions needed including from a legal perspective.

 

Installation, configuration and implementation went very smoothly and the client was impressed with how quickly and easily ELCA “made it work”. The proof of concept was done in June 2017, the implementation followed between September and October, and the “Go live” was at the end of January 2018. But these were not the only aspects ELCA impressed the client with: during our collaboration, the client recognized the huge capabilities in the ECM domain and the added value ELCA brought to the overall project.

 

Several thousand users now access documents archived in EASY via SharePoint – even though the archive solution EASY Archive is a totally separate solution – and the huge quantity of documents no longer affects SharePoint performance.