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An Interview with Elizabeth Silva and Mabel Valencerina for HBSComply® by HBS

We sat down with Mabel Valencerina & Elizabeth Silva from H. Boisch Solutions LLC to discuss what HBSComply is doing today to disrupt the Compliance & Ethics software space.

What is HBSComply?

Mabel: HBSComply is an all in one Compliance & Ethics tool that helps Compliance teams communicate their policies to employees and for employees to directly engage with Compliance professionals through the lens of Compliance policy and procedure.

How did you come up with the Original name Whistleblower Plus?

Mabel: The name originated from our roots.  When we first began to build Compliance & Ethics software, we began with anonymous reporting and case management.  The name “WhistleBlower” reflects the internal whistleblower reporting functionality.  However, we have since added so much more functionality to evolve into the “HBSComply” trademark and one stop shopping platform that we are today.

What does your ideal client look like?

Mabel: Actually, our ideal client is rather broad.  We have publicly traded companies and non-publicly traded companies.  We have clients that are commercial real estate or even law enforcement.  I can say that we are not focused on financial services firms now as we believe it important to meet the needs of other industries that have historically been under-represented.

Why not focus on Investment firms?

Mabel: We feel that investment firms have typically already been saturated with this type of ethics and compliance technology.  As a result, other industries are not represented with the type of customization that they need and at the budget friendly cost necessary to be effective.  Frankly put, industries outside of financial services will not have the ability to budget in this type of software if it comes from our financial services competitors.  Additionally, some of specific needs are not met.  An example is languages.  The investment management industry often expects its employees to speak English for business purposes which often means that software that focusses on that industry will not have strong international language capabilities.  This becomes a nonstarter for other industries like retail or consumer products where a large population of employees in non-English speaking countries will have to have software with international language functionality.  There are other examples but ultimately, we feel that we are in the right position to offer the right functionality at the right price for these industries.

You mention you have law enforcement clients.  That seems very different than corporate clients.  How did that come about and how can software cover the diligent requirements of law enforcement and corporations at the same time?

Liz: Yes, the law enforcement industry is of course very different but there are few industries more in need of a strong tool for ethics and compliance monitoring.  They have also not had many tools to choose from and we step in to fill this space.  Our law enforcement products are growing rapidly, and we’re excited about focusing here and becoming the premier law enforcement ethics tool!

Do you service clients in the US only or internationally?

Liz: We do serve clients internationally in over 40 countries.  However we currently serve law enforcement clients in the US only.

As a software as a service product how do you interact with your clients and your client’s employees accessing the platform?

Mabel: Our software creates interactions between the Compliance and even HR departments and the actual employees of the firm.  For many large companies and especially international companies there can be challenges when you have a Compliance department in one office, but thousands of employees located in many offices.  This makes interaction with the Compliance team a challenge for any organization and we help create the interaction and connection between employees and the firm’s policies and ethics programs

So how would you rank your platform for user friendliness?

Liz: Simply put it is very user friendly.  We focus heavily on listening to the users through our helpdesk and making enhancements and adjustments based on that feedback.

You've mentioned that your goal is to be a one stop shop for Compliance, what do you envision as the future for your platform?

Mabel: We currently have tools for anonymous reporting, case management, policy management, code of ethics and more.  We recently created an e-learning module and we expect to continue enhancing the platform to add more compliance and even HR Functionality

Liz, do you enjoy your line of work in dealing with employees of clients coming into the Helpdesk?

Liz: Absolutely, it is very rewording because the work we do on the helpdesk often has a direct impact on the enhancements we put in because we listen to our client’s issues and work towards constantly improving and evolving.

How do you approach innovation in software and what is your approach to enhancing the software?

Mabel: Well there are two main ways.  As Liz mentioned, we listen to clients through their employees via the helpdesk, but we also have regular meetings with our clients and we have had several campaigns where our founders will reach out to industry experts and understand what drives them and what software they would find interesting.  By listening to both clients and the types of decision makers that work in and around the industries we service, we find many ways to innovate.