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Chief Risk Officer Vs. Chief Compliance Officer

Chief risk officers and chief compliance officers ensure employees are meeting company and governmental policy, but there are differences in their salaries and career outlooks.

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Comparing Chief Risk Officers to Chief Compliance Officers

Chief risk officers ensure a company remains fiscally sound by regularly monitoring and addressing spending, while chief compliance officers attempt to keep employees aligned with company values. Readers will learn more about the responsibilities of these professionals, as well as their degree requirements, salaries, and career outlooks.

Job Title Educational Requirements Median Salary (2017)* Job Growth (2016-2026)**
Chief Risk Officers Bachelor's Degree $165,623 -4% (Chief Executives)
Chief Compliance Officers Bachelor's Degree $107,826 8% (Compliance Officers)

Sources: *PayScale, **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Responsibilities of Chief Risk Officers vs. Chief Compliance Officers

Chief risk officers and chief compliance officers are board members who work in corporate settings. The former assesses the fiscal risks a company takes as it invests or undertakes new projects. The latter, on the other hand, ensures the company and its employees are meeting internal policies as well as any applicable federal and state laws.

Chief Risk Officers

These executives handle risks regarding regulations in a global market. They create policy for risk management, especially when developing new products or taking on projects. When working on plans for a new project, risk officers ensure they understand the specific requirements so they can complete a risk assessment on the project. By controlling company-wide risks for different departments, these professionals give other board members a more holistic view of the risks. First, they meet with stakeholders to determine their limits for acceptable financial risks. Using early-detection tools, chief risk officers identify and monitor risks as they occur.

Job responsibilities of a chief risk officer include:

  • Communicating risks to other board members
  • Elevating critical problems to bring them to the CEO's attention
  • Managing inventory choices to ensure necessary resources for a project are favored
  • Ensuring projects adhere to industry standards

Chief Compliance Officers

Chief compliance officers evaluate how well the business's procedures meet government laws and company regulations. They may work with other board members to create standards of conduct for the entire organization. On a regular basis, these executives perform inspections to see if employees are following company policies, including checking for permits and licenses. Additionally, they gain information on suspected fraud from managers and then complete internal investigations to catch or even prevent illegal activity. Sometimes, however, chief compliance officers may be required to meet with the company's attorneys if there are legal issues.

Job responsibilities of a chief compliance officer include:

  • Creating standards for employees to meet in regards to policies
  • Building an awareness of all new or changing laws that affect the business
  • Developing training programs and documents for employees to teach them regulatory policies
  • Working with corporate compliance committees within the organization

Related Careers

Because chief risk officers and chief financial officers both work with the fiscal health of a company, you could explore either of these options for your future. Compliance officers and chief executive officers both create business policy, so these are also possible careers for you to look into.

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