If your headquarters is based in Paris, London or New York, it would be understandable if you didn’t have an intricate knowledge of the labour laws in a jurisdiction in Asia, which is thousands of miles away.
For instance, did you know that Indian lawmakers recently increased the threshold to allow organisations to employ 300 staff before they must seek government approval on hiring and firing? Possibly not. And this is why corporate entity management software is essential for your business.
As companies expand into new nations, merging with or creating new legal entities, the legal department suddenly becomes ultimately responsible for a host of new compliance challenges.
This article explains what corporate entity management software is, how it helps you address these challenges across the world and which features the ideal solution would have.
What is entity management software?
Entity management software is a specialist program for overseeing regulatory matters of multiple entities in multiple locations. It provides a central repository for all of your compliance efforts, records and documents. Your team can instantly find the information they need about each of your entities, including corporate status and management structures, with a quick search through the database stored in the cloud.
In addition, you can track important details and automate the repetitive tasks that make up the entity management portion of your legal professionals’ work.
Why do you need an entity management system?
An entity management system can revolutionise the way you oversee compliance across your organisation. Here are some of the benefits of using software to look after your entities:
Manual entity management processes are time-consuming and open to mistakes as well. The statistics show that our software helps businesses to save 65% of their internal time on legal documents.
Keeps you on track with deadlines
Entity management software centralises all of your compliance deadlines for all of your entities, setting them out so you don’t miss licence renewals or other events that could restrict an entity’s ability to operate.
Accounts for remote working
Your legal team might not be based permanently in the office, so a cloud-based software solution allows remote working colleagues to access the database and carry out their duties wherever they are working from.
Data handling capabilities
As well as saving time for employees, entity management software also prevents overwhelm by handling the vast amounts of data required when managing entities and using automation to process it.
Keeping up with compliance
Compliance shifts quickly, and it is increasingly challenging to keep up. By managing entities using a programme like Klea, you get the latest accurate information on exactly what is required of your entities by experts on the ground in those jurisdictions.
You can see all compliance efforts across the group, which allows for transparency over what happens within the business. You can be sure that an action someone in one subsidiary on the other side of the world claims has happened has actually occurred because it all happens on the platform.
The 8 must-have features of corporate entity management software
1. Secure document management
The security of your sensitive business documents is essential whenever you consider a new piece of software. As well as the risk of leaks from your business and competitors accessing strategically important information, you have a duty in most jurisdictions to protect the data that you collect, process and hold.
Data leaks could lead to sanctions under legislation such as the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), as well as reputational damage and a loss of trust in your processes. For these reasons, choose entity management software that guarantees rigorous safety protocols for your documents.
Your entity management platform is your central vault of information, your one source of truth, so you need to protect it in order for your employees to be confident using it to manage entities.
2. Meeting management
Being able to monitor the progress of putting together meetings, including Annual General Meetings (AGMs), ensures that they all go ahead in a compliant manner with all the relevant information sourced, compiled, distributed and recorded.
The workflow from your corporate entity management software will alert you to impending deadlines for each of the steps you need to take towards preparing the meeting, keeping you on track.
When you have multiple entities, this can become confusing if you are still relying on a manual meeting process. Your ideal entity management platform will automate this workflow so your legal team can check the status of the project, with the software assigning the correct people to the right tasks.
3. Entity information database
When you have multiple entities, you should have an effective database for all of the compliance information that you need to know. Your entity management software should hold all the relevant details for each entity and allow you to set reminders for events that keep them all compliant.
Your entity information database should hold information about each entity, such as dates critical to the business, details on the jurisdiction in which it is situated, the date of its year-end, and the names and contact details of officers, directors and shareholders (depending on disclosure rules). In addition, it should provide details of the governance of the company, its registrations and licences, meeting minutes, financial reports and a host of other necessary information.
4. Visual compliance agenda
A visual compliance agenda is a dashboard that shows you in an easy-to-read format the state of play with your entity management across your group. You can easily spot when there are deadlines or action points required, and you can plan ahead by delegating tasks to team members if there are multiple actions to be taken across the group in a short period of time.
You can see when processes will begin and end, and you gain a better idea of the current state of your group of companies.
5. Organisational chart management
Upon expansion, it can be challenging to get to grips with the updated corporate structure within your organisation. As your entity management software contains all the information you need on all of your entities, it can also arrange them in an easy-to-understand chart within the program.
You can visualise how all your entities are linked through shareholdings, and this makes it a handy resource internally and even externally in some circumstances. These ownership structures help everyone know where they stand within a business and which areas they take responsibility for.
6. Real-time, robust reporting
In order to gain the full picture of what is happening within your business, you need up-to-date and trusted information. Trying to control the compliance efforts of entities around the world is all the more challenging if you also have to spend a good deal of your time chasing individuals to find out what they have been doing and persuading them to send evidence of their activities to you.
This is why an entity management software solution with real-time, robust reporting is essential. As soon as an activity takes place in one of your entities, it appears on the dashboard and is logged for all parties involved to see. This forms part of your audit trail and provides peace of mind that the activities that you need to take place have been completed and in the manner in which they should according to the local legislation.
7. Manage entity tasks and alerts
The benefit of a dedicated platform for your entity management processes is that they all take place within that software. From messaging to task delegation and time-keeping, the ideal software for your business will allow you to manage all your entity tasks and set alerts to inform relevant people of their responsibilities and deadlines.
You simply start a new task, enter the pertinent details and the software designates the right people to perform their subtasks in a smooth and efficient workflow that gets things done when you need them done.
Everyone stays on track, and you can monitor the progress of the tasks within the software.
8. Professional legal help
The best legal entity management software utilises the talents and knowledge of legal experts in the territories in which you work. They are the people who truly understand the intricacies of the compliance landscape in their countries and who can provide you with accurate information that maintains the integrity of your entity.
There is nothing like hands-on experience with the challenges that you face remaining compliant in a variety of administrations, so look for a solution that can connect you with expertise across the world.
Tips on choosing the right provider
- Consider the level of support available. Entity management is a complicated, essential process that leaves little room for error. If your software provider is not available when things go awry, it can have significant consequences for your business.
- Do they adhere to security and quality standards? You deal with the personal data of many individuals, as well as sensitive business information. You cannot afford for breaches and leaks to happen within your entity management system, so check the platform’s security credentials.
- Consider jurisdictional coverage. Some software providers provide experts in a small number of countries, but that is not much use to you if they do not provide expertise in the jurisdictions in which you operate. Having experts on the ground is an additional level of compliance for your entities.
What type of information is stored on an entity management system?
Your entity management system will store details of all of your entities, the people involved in them – from senior leaders to major shareholders – as well as the important legal information about the business, corporate records and documents that you need for the sake of compliance.
What is an entity strategy?
Your legal entity strategy is the process you go through to improve the efficiency of your entity management process. It includes neatening up structures and streamlining your processes, including using software to capture all information necessary and optimise your workflows.
What is the principle of entity?
The principle of entity is used in accounting to show that a company should be treated as separate from its owners and seen as an entity in its own right for the purposes of running it on a day-to-day basis.
Corporate entity management software is the key to streamlining the way you manage your entities. From creating workflows to retrieving vital information in seconds to visualising your compliance deadlines across the group, it makes life easier and more productive for legal teams.
Klea offers different solutions to perform these tasks with ease and has legal experts in a wide range of jurisdictions, ready to guide you through the compliance process wherever you have a presence. It is a secure and easy-to-use platform that will transform how you deal with entities. Discover more about Klea today.