How to maintain document compliance
Compliance is a multifaceted topic, one that in its various forms is of massive importance to all businesses in all industries. Companies undertake efforts on a massive scale to remain in proper adherence to compliance laws – particularly those involving taxation and financial propriety. This is with good reason. The penalties for failing to remain complaint are often massive. For example, in the United States, the Internal Revenue Service levies fines that at their minimum are typically in the tens of thousands of dollars, and can also require the forfeiture of property.
For any business, the damage resulting from a compliance failure – related to tax code or any other area – are not only monetary, although those are of course significant. Arguably, the most truly adverse effects of such incidents would be to a company’s reputation, potentially resulting in unwanted media attention, the loss of trust from valued customers and a reduced standing among the business’ competition. Firms need to make sure that all records and documents, both internal and client-facing, are completed with all necessary information to be in keeping with regulatory standards.
Using the variable data printing capabilities offered by Objectif Lune can help ensure that this issue is properly addressed.
New SEPA regulation for countries in EU
A relatively recent new regulation among businesses in the 32 Single Euro Payments Area (SEPA) nations within the European Union serves as an example of the issues described above. The new code was first established in 2012 by the European Payments Council, but its primary provisions are slated to take effect on February 1, 2014. Companies that have yet to adopt it in full are being pressured to do so by government departments – Tax-News reports that the German Finance Ministry is currently in the midst of an initiative to help ensure compliance across the board.
According to the European Payments Council, all payers and payees involved in credit transfers and direct debits within SEPA must ensure that every document pertaining such transactions must contain the International Bank Account Number (IBAN) and Business Identifier Code (BIC) designations. These regulations will also extend to non-euro countries under the EU’s jurisdiction, although their compliance deadline is much later – October 31, 2016.
Within Germany, there exists a concern that some customers and businesses may not be prepared for the changes, or know exactly how to implement them, according to Tax-News. To combat this, various other SEPA nations have developed dedicated websites that explain the terms, requirements and procedures involved, which can be easily found through the web portal of the European Central Bank.
Where does variable data printing come into play?
The companies that the aforementioned IBAN regulation will affect are, by nature, going to be dealing with mailing out thousands of documents on a regular basis and potentially reaching out to millions of customers and maybe under different subsidaries. For credit transfers, debit transactions, invoices and related paperwork, these will all need to bear the IBAN and BIC markings. If, for example, the wrong markings are used for a business division, the governments of the countries that offending businesses call home will be required to levy various penalties against them, which will vary from nation to nation.
Some businesses might not have the printing technologies that’ll be necessary to ensure uniform document printing and processing – and that’s where the PrintShop Mail software suite from Objectif Lune comes in.
PrintShop Mail is compatible with any design, database or printer, and your business can easily set it up to ensure that your company’s financial documents will always include the IBAN and BIC designations. It can also assist with the distribution process by allowing your to print your own barcodes and save on postage.
Get in touch with Objectif Lune today to learn more about how variable data printing can benefit your company!