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The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

MetricStream: Simplifying Governance Risk and Compliance

Jaya Smitha Menon
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Jaya Smitha Menon
In 2001, when Enron Corporation, America’s seventh largest company, went into bankruptcy after having been involved in an extensive scam which ruined its stake holders, investors, employees and customers, the U.S. government came with the Sarbanes Oxley act to crack down on corporate fraud and avoid shady dealings, including concealing debts in the company’s accounts. The act mandates a stricter governance model and tighter internal controls in organizations. It also brought along a bundle of complex procedures to follow. In another case, the disastrous drug trial by a big pharma company in U.K. left six men hospitalized and this triggered an inquiry by the regulatory authority. The drug designed to treat rheumatoid arthritis, leukemia and multiple sclerosis, caused a horrific reaction in all six healthy men. The inquiry revealed that the company had failed to adhere to the compliance regulations and hence was penalized.

At the wake of such scandals, accidents and calamities across various industries the law has tightened its grip and compliance has become imperative. Though intended to avoid risk and to protect and safeguard investors and customers a major criticism against ‘regulatory compliances’ is that it becomes a burden for the companies, taking into consideration the high cost involved in the implementation of these procedures.

Today all public listed companies in the U.S. have to adhere to the compliance regulations and regularly validate the certifications. Because of the complexity of the compliance process many companies are turning to specialized software to help manage their compliance activities. It is on the technology of making governance, risk and compliance (GRC) procedures and process an easier and cost effective task that the engineers at MetricStream concentrate.

At MetricStream they believe that “good compliance is good business”. Over 250 employees working in the Bangalore office are engaged in building applications that make compliance a good business strategy. MetricStream’s compliance management solutions are designed to support and manage overall compliance of the industry with multiple norms and regulations for various industries like the financial sector, healthcare, food and beverage, energy, medical, pharmaceutical and manufacturing. Though a relatively young company, started in Silicon Valley, U.S. in 2001 MetricStream has lined up a whole gamut of products and solutions across different verticals to unify the management of governance, risk, compliance and quality management across an entire organization.

In the wake of Sarbanes Oxley and many other similar acts which were introduced in the early part of the 21st century many companies came up with compliance software solutions. But very few companies thrived as compliance was not practiced by most companies then. But MetricStream, has been successful in lining up customers such as, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer, major food and beverage company Coke and other entities like Nektar Theraupatics, Wolverline Worldwide and Fairchild Semiconductors. The engineers of Metricstream successfully came up with product-solutions which enabled these large and multinational companies in diverse industries to make the shift from isolated compliance initiatives and departmental silos of risk-related information to integrated enterprise-wide strategy for governance, risk, compliance and quality management. The recent addition to the customer base is Aurobindo Pharma, one of the fasts growing Pharmaceutical Companies in Asia. Metricstream also has a partnership with NASDAQ to offer its GRC solutions to its listed members.

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