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The First Practice Note

Monday 6 February 2023

This article was originally published in the GRC Professional Magazine (You must be logged in to access your member copy).  

Compliance professionals should think strategically about their programs instead of being reactive. 

GRC Institute Director Anette Donselaar GRC Professional Podcast that this proactive approach was, and still is, the thinking behind the Three Lines paper published almost two years ago. 
The First Practice Note
Since then, Donselaar and some GRCI alum have been working and, and continue to work, on more supporting documents to help compliance professionals build effective programs. 

The Annual GRC 2022 Conference officially launched the first  Practice Note in Assurance.

This practice note is the first five practice notes supporting the Three Lines paper. 
Assurance is just one of the five critical success factors identified in the original paper that would be essential for the three lines model to be effective in organisations. 
The other five critical success factors are;  Role clarity, Accountability, Independence and Resourcing. 

Annette Donselaar said the original paper aimed to demystify the three lines model. 
“And it tries to bring it back to a practical application that you can think about in the context of your overall risk and compliance governance for your organisation.”

In early 2022 Donselaar and some of the  GRC Institute alums looked at how they could make the Three Lines paper even more accessible to members. The solution was to create practice notes to support the critical success factors. 
What is a Practice Note?
"So, a practice note is something that is between the checklist and training course. The idea is that it provides information about how you can actually deliver these action items, and more, in practice. "
The Practice Note lays it out its guiding principles:

  • Purpose and clarity on what is being measured, assessed, and verified - and why
  • Clearly defined programs in each line, especially lines one and two
  • A framework that sets out each step in the assurance process
  • Structured coordination and information sharing between all three lines
  • Clearly drafted reports that engage and inform the reader
The director described the practice Notes as something for members, by members. 
“So, the idea is that we get alumni together, we pick on a topic that comes out of the three lines, and then we explore that in some detail so that members can actually get access to information and ideas about how to make that particular concept work."
You can download you copy of the Practice Note