As governance, risk management, and compliance (GRC) becomes an increasingly prominent part of many companies’ overall business strategy, more organizations are seeking out tools to aid in their efforts. Enter: GRC software systems.
GRC software can successfully streamline and centralize a company’s GRC-related efforts, providing a wide variety of useful features, tools, and functionalities. But the pricing for these software platforms can vary rather dramatically, leaving many to wonder precisely what they should expect to pay for GRC software.
What Does GRC Software Do?
GRC software performs a wide range of functions. The overarching objective to governance, risk management, and compliance software is to provide a collaborative platform where a business can identify, evaluate and manage operational risks and regulatory compliance, among other things.
- Data Management and Auditing Tools – Data management and auditing is a key component of compliance. All that money and effort expended to achieve compliance is wasted if you cannot prove your compliance if the need arises. Auditing tools allow you to prove compliance and identify problem areas. Data management tools are extremely important for ensuring that proper practices are in place.
- Legal and Regulatory Compliance Updates – Legal and regulatory bodies are continually creating and updating regulations/laws. A good GRC software platform will include a dashboard feed or compliance database feature that provides information on new regulatory issues. The best software will allow you to apply location- and industry-specific filters.
- Reporting, Analytics, and Data Tools – GRC software usually features reporting tools, analytics, and data visualization tools, empowering a business to make data-driven decisions concerning governance, risk management, and compliance-related issues.
- Third-Party Risk Management Tools – A number of GRC software systems include TPRM tools that allow for background checks, TPRM surveys, and other tools for managing vendors, contractors, and other third parties who may potentially pose a risk.
It is also not uncommon to encounter overlap with environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) software and — as mentioned above — TPRM software. An increasing number of GRC software systems include tools for managing risk and achieving compliance in other areas such as this. The pricing for these software platforms tends to be a bit more since they include a broader range of features.
GRC Software Pricing – What Accounts for the Differential?
GRC software pricing varies according to a few factors, including some of the following.
- Licensed vs SaaS GRC Software – One of the most significant factors in GRC software pricing is the type of software. Software-as-a-service (SaaS) GRC platforms are generally very affordable and they are usually billed on a monthly or annual basis. SaaS GRC software is a popular choice because everything is typically cloud-based and most SaaS software platforms offer robust support services. There is also no need to worry about software updates since SaaS platforms are usually maintained and updated by the service provider. Some managed services providers also offer SaaS GRC software solutions.Licensed software is usually more expensive since it is a one-time expense. Once purchased, the license is usually good forever, although an increasing number of software developers are offering annual licenses. In these cases, once a year passes, the software will stop accepting updates or may cease to work entirely until you renew the license. With licenses, you are buying the software rather than using it on a SaaS platform. You are typically responsible for all updates and maintenance. Support is generally less robust for licensed software when compared to SaaS solutions.
- Features and Integrations – Some GRC software is more feature-rich, while other platforms are more basic. The number of available features has a major influence on price. In short, the more sophisticated the software, the more expensive it tends to be.Integrations are also another pricing factor. Software that features “one-click integration” with lots of third-party platforms is generally more expensive than alternatives with few or no integrations. A number of GRC software platforms allow for custom integrations, which is a good option if you have tech talent available to perform the integrations. Others offer paid add-ons or plugins that allow users to add specific integrations and even additional functionalities.
- GRC Software Configuration and Customization – Licensed software, in particular, often allows for customization, which is typically performed during the implementation and configuration process — just before rollout and deployment. You should expect to see a higher cost associated with implementation if you are performing customizations.In fact, implementation costs are yet another consideration. Not all platforms require a tech professional to implement and deploy the GRC software system. It depends upon the complexity of the software, the nature of the integrations and the degree to which customization or configuration is required.
Some pricier, higher-end GRC software includes lots of in-built configuration options, which tend to increase the cost of the software. Although the higher cost can be offset by the increased functionality and greater ease of use.
Many GRC software systems feature stripped-back demo versions; others offer live demos, performed by a sales rep over Zoom or similar. It is prudent to see the platform in action whenever possible since this will give you a better feel for factors such as user-friendliness.
GRC Software Pricing – How Much Should I Expect to Pay?
GRC software can be rather difficult to price out because many companies only offer customized price quotes, which are determined by factors such as the following.
- The size of the company
- The number of users
- The software version and feature set
- The number of required integrations
Here is a look at some GRC software pricing for some of the more popular platforms.
- SAP GRC charges between $500-15,000 per license.
- StandardFusion charges $1,250 for up to 3 users per month.
- IBM OpenPages charges $272 per user, per year.
- Navex Global RiskRate charges on an annual basis at a rate of $5,000 per year.
Platforms such as ServiceNow Governance Risk and Compliance, Enablon, SAI Global Compliance 360, Riskonnect and Fusion Risk Management offer only custom price quotes.
When examining GRC software pricing, remember to consider additional costs associated with customization, integrations, implementation and user training.
Governance, risk management and compliance software can effectively centralize an organization’s risk mitigation and risk management efforts. The tools within a GRC software platform can streamline and simplify the process of monitoring and mitigating risks, but you need to ensure you find the right solution for your needs. At iTech, GRC and risk management are two areas of specialty. We invite you to contact the iTech team to discuss your GRC efforts and how the right GRC solutions will benefit your organization.