For compliance officers, monitoring employee behavior has always been a tricky road to navigate. With new social media platforms and apps popping up everyday, it seems that effective employee surveillance is becoming increasingly difficult for compliance officers.

A new survey from Compliance Solutions at Charles Schwab found that compliance practitioners spend 11 hours per week monitoring and surveilling their employees’ personal brokerage accounts, while half are closely monitoring social media platforms.

“We believe the 11 hour per week of monitoring does not include the time spent collating relevant data,” said Mallinath Sengupta, chief executive, NextAngles, a compliance solution provider. “One of the main issues that compliance officers face is collation of relevant and contextual data. Instead, compliance officers should spend more time on ‘real monitoring’”.

The survey also points out that 34 percent of compliance professionals say that they spend a “disproportionate amount of time” collecting data rather than actually analyzing it. Non-traditional compliance such as third party vendor reviews, cyber-security, information governance and most important keeping up with the changing regulatory landscape remains a huge challenge for compliance officers.

“Even alleged noncompliance can result in swift adverse business effects, such as decreased sales, decreased productivity, reduced share price, and reduced brand value, all putting a company in serious jeopardy,” said Scott Rister, vice president and general manager, Compliance Solutions. “In this environment, a highly-effective compliance program is not just a business advantage, but also a business necessity.”

On the upside, 49 percent of compliance officers said that they’ve taken action against an employee for failing to follow a company’s code of conduct with 11 percent of those actions resulting in termination, the survey reveals.

About 43 percent of compliance officers said that a top agenda item over the next year is testing and auditing and following 39 percent feel that streamlining their compliance program is another area of focus.

“Compliance essentially boils down to figuring out whether all the regulations and rules are being applied in day-to-day business,” Sengupta said. “These rules and normal banking transactions are two different islands and tests and audits are the bridge. That’s why, constant testing and auditing are imperative to compliance function.”