Roadblocks and Freeways: Switching Sectors On The Road to Compliance

Switching sectors within Compliance can be challenging.

Whilst some rules and regulations are similar–and in some cases even identical–, the approach to risk management, licence applications and market launches can have huge differences.

Since October I have been helping two new challenger banks work their launch into the UK Financial Sector. Having been so focused on the gambling industry, the switching of sectors had me thinking that perhaps my knowledge, and lessons-learned, could also be of use to others.

So here we are with my latest Compliance Corner column – not just an article about moving between sectors, but one that also focuses on being able to adjust to undertaking a compliance role in any sector.

Compliance, per se, is not a sexy role. If you’ve found yourself thrust into the department, it is usually because of skills and knowledge that you have gained elsewhere, which have some relevance.

I believe that people with Sales or Customer Service experience often make great Compliance Officers. Their ability to work with people, and influence decisions, is key to the role. While those with a legal background are usually the frontrunners in the quest for compliance roles; strategically, they are not always the best fit.

In the rapidly-expanding world of online gambling, amid Financial Services and the constant flux of challengers and FX Companies, Compliance is the cornerstone of trust, integrity, and regulatory adherence.

But how do individuals find their way into these pivotal Compliance roles? And what does the journey entail?

Influence and passion

Experience of sales and customer service can bring great skills to the compliance table.

If you can combine this with a thirst for knowledge and an eye for detail, it’s a perfect combination for any employee wishing to enter the world of Compliance.

Sales people, for example, have the unique ability of identifying what you want or need, and then providing you with exactly that service or product. Compliance is not so different. The way that you encourage employees to adhere to policies is always best done by selling the positive reasons for Compliance, as opposed to the negative consequences of non-adherence.

Additionally, successful salespeople usually have a passion for the business they represent. It’s their job to sell your services. So this means that when they move into a compliance-focused role their passion is often contagious and, hopefully, can inspire team members.

Education and Certification

I do not believe that qualifications are necessarily essential when it comes to most jobs – especially Compliance. For instance, I would much rather have someone in my team with good people skills, than somebody with just a certificate in Safer Gambling which, in my view, is simply a paid-for pat-on-the-back.

Nevertheless, individuals seeking Compliance roles in online gambling often pursue formal education and professional certifications tailored to the digital landscape. By obtaining degrees in fields such as Digital Marketing, Cybersecurity, or Regulatory Compliance, they can equip themselves with the knowledge and expertise needed to thrive in compliance roles.

This commitment to continuous learning demonstrates adaptability and enhances job prospects. So whilst I personally do not take this into dominant account, I do see the qualities that come with the dedication to obtaining and enhancing one’s skillset.

Likewise, networking and socialising is not the only pathway for gaining knowledge. Personally, I’d much rather read 1,000 pages of legislation–and draft a report on how to implement updates into my business–than attend a “networking party” in the hope that I gain some “nuggets of information”.

But with this said, I fully appreciate that networking is an essential component of career development in iGaming.

Individuals seeking compliance roles actively engage with digital gaming professionals, participate in online forums, and attend virtual conferences to expand their professional network and stay abreast of industry trends.

By fostering relationships with mentors and peers in the digital realm, they gain valuable insights and support to navigate the nuances of online compliance.

Transitioning with Confidence

The path to compliance roles is as diverse as the individuals who embark on this journey.

There is no one single route to success; rather there are myriad opportunities when choosing to transition into compliance. Be prepared to invest a lot of time into your personal growth. Without the investment of time and the commitment to understanding human risk, it will be tough to succeed in any compliance role.

Whether driven by a passion for digital gaming, a thirst for knowledge, or a desire to ensure Regulatory Compliance, aspiring professionals can chart their course with confidence.

By leveraging their communications expertise, pursuing digital education and certification, and fostering online connections within the industry, they can navigate the complexities of online compliance with resilience and determination.

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