It is the duty of a compliance officer to perform regular inspections or audits to make sure specific laws and policies under their charge are being met. In other words, they ensure that companies, governing bodies, and organizations are acting in accordance with internal policies and regulatory restrictions.
What Does a Compliance Officer Do?
Compliance officers are responsible for making sure that their organization is compliant with laws and regulations, such as requirements for licensing. They gather and evaluate information and present their findings to leadership or a governing body. Based on their discoveries, they make recommendations for improvements.
Many compliance officers work for the federal government, and the rest are employed in a wide range of industries, including health care and transportation. They may be hired to enforce food safety regulations or ensure protective measures for the environment are being taken. Fire inspectors, licensing examiners, equal employment opportunity officers, and transportation system inspectors are a few job titles one can expect to assume as a compliance officer
It’s common for a compliance officer to work for an agency or a company contracted to provide compliance work; therefore, his or her physical work environment will vary based on the company or organization they are reviewing or auditing. Working conditions can range from reviewing documents in a comfortable office to off-site fieldwork on an oil rig in the middle of the sea. Many find this fluctuating job-to-job environment one of the most exciting aspects of the career.
How Much Do Compliance Officers Get Paid?
Because compliance officers can be employed in so many different industries, and due to other factors like years of experience and the size of the company for which they work, the salary of compliance officers will vary immensely across the board. Keeping that in mind, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that compliance officers in general earn a median salary of $68,860.
How Do I Become a Compliance Officer?
To become a compliance officer, you must have at least a bachelor’s degree. Specific job requirements vary by industry. This diversity of employer type and employer needs creates the requirement for extensive specialized training and education in the industry for which the officer works. Many positions require certification, and continuing education to stay current on laws and regulations is also sometimes required.
Compliance officers must be strong leaders, writers, and public speakers with communication and ethical decision-making skills. Due to the confidential nature of the work of a compliance officer, integrity will also take someone far in this occupation.
Gain the Skills to Become a Compliance Officer
As compliance officers can work in a variety of industries, you should have a background in the industry in which you want to be employed. To learn more about the various laws and regulations that affect your desired industry, Concordia University, St. Paul offers numerous online degree programs. Choose from areas such as business, criminal justice, and health care administration. All of our programs offer a flexible online format that allows you to complete your coursework whenever and wherever is right for you.