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ISO 37001:2016 anti-bribery management system

Compliance with anti-bribery laws challenges organisations to put appropriate mechanisms in place to guard against the risk of engaging in bribery. With anti-bribery laws in 46 jurisdictions , governments are taking a more aggressive approach to enforcement for such offences.

 

UK Bribery Act 2010

The UK Bribery Act 2010 goes beyond just dealing with large-scale, multi-million dollar bribes; it also targets much lower-level bribery, affecting corporate hospitality, gift-giving and facilitation payments. While large enterprises may be able to afford extensive legal advice to put appropriate safeguards in place, this cost is likely to be beyond the reach of many smaller organisations in the public, private and third sectors.

The Bribery Act 2010 included a specific section on “Failure of commercial organisations to prevent bribery” (section 7). This means that all commercial organisations are responsible for the conduct of people who work for it in the event that they bribe another person.

 

ISO 37001:2016 anti-bribery management system

ISO 37001:2016 specifies the requirements and provides guidance for an anti-bribery management system (ABMS) for organisations of any size, type and location. The Standard gives organisations the opportunity to put in place a culture of integrity, transparency and compliance – led by committed top management and board members. For these organisations, putting in place an ABMS will significantly simplify the process of compliance.

ISO 37001 covers international best practice to help transform legislation into practical policies, processes and procedures. It is designed to help organisations in any jurisdiction put the correct anti-bribery practices in place and ensure that they are being implemented adequately.

A copy of ISO 37001:2016 can be purchased here >>

 

The scope of implementing an ISO 37001:2016 ABMS requires organisations to consider:

  • the external and internal issues;
  • the stakeholders relevant to the ABMS;
  • the requirements of the stakeholder; and,
  • the results of a risk assessment.

Appropriate mechanisms have been devised in ISO 37001 to guard the organisation and its staff from engaging in bribery if implemented effectively. Engaging in bribery does not have to be premeditated and the person responsible may be unaware that their actions constitute bribery (or acceptance of bribery), which is why it is important to create and maintain staff awareness. Complying with ISO 37001 requires organisations to have e procedures in place, which detail how to deal appropriately with, and respond to, the offer of a bribe and policies in place to ensure a bribe is not offered.

 

ISO 37001:2016 anti-bribery management system

ISO 37001 specifies a number of anti-bribery policies and procedures that an organisation should implement to assist in the prevention of bribery, and identify and deal with any bribery that does occur. It can assist in promoting and maintaining a compliance approach from top management down, and establishes an anti-bribery compliance function appropriate to the size of the organisation and the corruption risks it faces.

 

What does ISO 37001 mean in terms of corporate policy?

An ABMS provides a framework for top management and other leadership elements to decide upon risk-based objectives.

In essence – as with all management systems – leadership sets the tone. An ABMS shows that an organisation is serious about legal compliance and is doing all it reasonably can to prevent itself becoming involved in corrupt practices. This is an ongoing journey of commitment and process evolution.

An ABMS also mitigates reputational risk. In essence, the greater the organisation’s public profile, the more it needs to avoid being associated with anything that might be seen as questionable by the law and, perhaps, most importantly, by its customers and other stakeholders.

 

Implement an ISO 37001-compliant ABMS

Comply with your legal obligations and commit to the integrity of your organisation with the ISO 37001:2016 Anti-Bribery Management System Documentation Toolkit. It contains a complete set of mandatory and supporting documentation, expert guidance on ISO 37001:2016 from our external author, Alan Field and project tools to support your implementation. Find out more >>