5 good reasons for centralizing GRC data

Sword GRC Blog

5 good reasons for centralizing GRC data

The effective use of data is essential for decision-making, yet many organizations still face the challenge of trying to gain meaningful insights from governance, risk, and compliance (GRC) data held in silos or dispersed across the business. It may be the case that within certain functions, data is collected, processed and analyzed manually and at a departmental or team level. Or it could be that data points for GRC do exist within the organization, but there’s no means of communicating them. Yet taking an integrated approach to data and enabling greater collaboration between stakeholders drives benefits.

In an increasingly complex regulatory environment, in which business accountability and transparency are paramount, the definition of GRC provided by Scott Mitchell in ‘GRC360: A framework to help organizations drive principles performance’ – an early academic paper on the theme – still rings true. For Mitchell, GRC is: “The integrated collection of capabilities that enable an organization to reliably achieve objectives, address uncertainty, and act with integrity.”

If GRC personnel cannot access and effectively analyze high volumes of data generated, businesses run the risk of missing insights and the repercussions could be costly, especially when you take into account legal fines, penalties, profit loss, and reputational damage.

We’ve put together five reasons why taking an integrated approach to GRC data with centralization within one single platform is worth consideration:  

Data governance is scrutinized. The quality of data that businesses use to inform decisions around GRC is carefully regulated. For value to be created from data assets under the constraints of compliance and security, and for potential liability to be avoided, alignment is required. Holding all GRC data in one single platform makes it easier to demonstrate the timeliness of data and its quality.


  1. One single source of truth drives alignment.

Just one sole source of real-time GRC data provides clarity and certainty for all personnel and GRC stakeholders. An integrated GRC platform means no discrepancy between multiple versions of datasets or the use of non-approved metrics. All involved can align around one source data truth regarding the organization’s GRC status, making it easier to meet strategic GRC objectives and maximize upon opportunities.


  1. You see the full picture

With all GRC data held in one place, it can be easier to see the complete picture – how individual pieces of data may relate to one another. For instance, there will likely be controls and key risk indicators (KRIs) for each of your identified operational risks. These same risks may be connected to compliance policies and audit records and/or your organization’s operational resilience practice within its ORMF. A holistic GRC view provides greater visibility of the interplay between data connections and drives insights that inform decision-making.


  1. Insights are deeper 

As volumes and complexity of data increase, so does the value of decision-making processes. When GRC data is centralized, leadership has the ability to deep drill into dashboards and get to the crux of issues, drawing the right conclusions from trustworthy data and deciding the appropriate actions to take.


  1. Supports change management 

The greater alignment brought about by centralized GRC makes for better outcomes when an organization sets new strategic objectives or seeks to change its compliance or risk culture. A comprehensive GRC framework will support changing risk exposures, developments in legislation, departmental goals, and critically, the wider scope of the organization’s cultural evolution.


Discover the Sword GRC software stack 

See how Sword’s GRC technology solutions can provide a single source of truth that addresses the challenges within your GRC data management. Learn more.