Need SOX compliance relief? There’s a secure cloud for that!

August 11, 2021

Court Maton
Partner, US Workiva SOX Leader, PwC US
Lauren Massey
Partner, Cyber, Risk and Regulatory, PwC US

Cost and risk reduction can be possible, but requires some sophistication

It’s been almost 20 years since Sarbanes-Oxley passed and created a new level of oversight on accounting and reporting. But many companies still find compliance arduous and costly—particularly if they have not yet adopted next-generation automation technologies to ease the process.

Compliance teams have been grinding through expensive and time consuming manual processes for two decades, simply spending what it takes to get it right; cutting corners on quality is simply not an option. There is a better way. By streamlining and enabling automation, companies are getting returns on their compliance investment. They are saving time and money, while gaining enhanced comfort with their controls.

Ever-evolving cloud-based tools and technologies can help lower both the costs and the risks of SOX compliance. But even here, it can be difficult to know where to start—or to even recognize an opportunity to use technology you already have in-house.

About 75% of the Fortune 500 uses the Workiva cloud-based automation platform. But given its power and flexibility, most may not be using it to its full potential. PwC’s data analysis finds that most companies are using it mostly for a single use case, when there is much more opportunity to gain. For instance, there are newly available API connectors that can pull new data and then structure it to build, for instance, risk assessment reports. That data could then flow through to dashboards, to create greater visibility and relevance to the business. Imagine assessing the impact of issues as they arise to remediate deficiencies quickly.

And as more data moves to the cloud, it helps to have an enterprise-wide view of how to configure Workiva to best align to other changes in the IT and regulatory environment, such as expected new mandates to capture environmental, social and governance data. And in the pandemic, we’ve seen a greater requirement for key workflows move to a secure environment in the cloud. Enabling automated compliance workflows through a cloud-based tool is a faster, compliant and more secure way to help meet these demands.

Recognizing the potential, PwC is connecting our proprietary digital workforce, the Test Factory, via APIs into the Workiva platform. This allows information to be pulled from Workiva, tested within PwC’s efficient and secure testing environment, with results returned back into Workiva. The following video demonstrates the value that PwC’s intelligent controls solution and the Test Factory™ is delivering today: PwC Intelligent Controls.

Leveraging a solution like PwC and Workiva to help manage SOX provides efficiency and effectiveness. Through integrated workflows, simplified document management and a rapidly evolving digital workforce, companies can focus their skills and talent beyond compliance.

For most companies already using Workiva, the shift to adding SOX compliance is simple: it means moving from WDesk—Workiva’s assemble-and-report workflow functionality—and expanding to WData, Workiva’s data connectors. These enable all kinds of information to be consumed automatically, giving companies the ability to manage complex data and solve problems. PwC’s Test Factory helps further enhance the compliance journey by allowing PwC clients to get access to digitally-enabled testing.

This is where PwC can work with you to get smarter with your use of Workiva, and get more out of your data. For more information, visit

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