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Discover ISO 37002 - Whistleblowing Management System

Discover ISO 37002 – Whistleblowing Management System

Discover ISO 37002 - Whistleblowing Management System and understand its importance in compliance and corporate governance.

In today’s article, we will talk a little about ISO 37002 – Whistleblowing Management System. With the advent of the ISO 37000 family of standards and the increasingly important role of corporate governance, many tools have been created to support companies.

ISO 37002 is one of the tools that have emerged in this context. Initially, it is important to note that it is a guideline standard, that is, it is not certifiable. Thus, its role is only to provide assistance in the implementation of processes, procedures, and routines that properly handle complaints of any kind.

In addition, due to its focus, ISO 37002 is applicable and recommended to any organization that intends to improve its governance and thus reap the benefits of stronger management. Even without the possibility of certification, it can be a strong framework for whistleblowing channels and support for compliance systems.


The 3 Guiding Principles of ISO 37002 – Whistleblowing Management System

For this standard, a good whistleblowing process is advocated by 3 basic principles, according to which all handling should be executed and which should also permeate all reporting channels. They are:

  • Trust;
  • Impartiality;
  • Protection of the good-faith whistleblower.

In addition, the standard also addresses the basic stages of complaint handling, pointing out ways to ensure that the principles are secured. The aspects addressed by the standard are:

  • Receipt of complaints;
  • Assessment of the report;
  • Approach to complaints;
  • Handling of complaints;
  • Conclusion of complaints.

From these vital points and grounded by the guiding principles, the standard stipulates guidelines for the company to develop the necessary procedures, policies, and practices for the correct handling of complaints.

Through it, it is possible to create stronger and more integral processes that ensure impartial and fair handling. This creates more results for all interested parties and better visibility of the organization in the market and society as a whole.


Why Adopt This Standard?

Your company likely already has an established whistleblowing process. In this case, you might be wondering whether or not to adopt this standard. Before answering, it’s worth reflecting: when was the last time you revisited your compliance whistleblowing process?

We know that the global context has been changing very rapidly, making it very difficult to keep the whistleblowing management alive and updated. ISO 37002 is currently the main global framework for whistleblowing management, which could be of great value to your company.

With ISO 37002, it’s possible to cover the main aspects of this area and ensure a process based on international management references. Even if you already have well-established guidelines, it’s worth comparing them to the standard, validating your process, and implementing the necessary improvements.


Investigation: Deepening Whistleblowing Management

As we’ve said, this standard is part of the ISO 37000 family, a set of standards aimed at strengthening company management through compliance. In this family, we also have ISO 37001 (Anti-Bribery Management Systems) and ISO 37301 (Compliance Management Systems), both of which are certifiable.

Within this ecosystem, there may be complaints that are truly substantive and require more robust handling. In this case, the family of standards introduces another specific tool for this purpose: ISO/TS 37008:2023 – Internal Investigations of Organizations.

According to the abstract of the standard itself on the ISO website, 37008 can be used in companies of any size or field. It provides guidance on internal investigations within organizations, including:

  • the principles;
  • support for investigations;
  • establishment of policy, procedures, processes, and standards for conducting and reporting on an investigation;
  • communication of investigation results;
  • application of corrective measures.


Whistleblowing Management: Trends and the Importance of Adopting Good Tools

Today, we observe in the market that many companies have already adopted or are adopting ISO 37002 in their processes. This trend is even stronger in companies specialized in receiving and forwarding complaints – usually outsourced by other companies.

Similarly, ISO 37008 is also rapidly gaining traction for adoption and strengthening governance in companies. Likewise, many new tools are being developed by ISO in this regard.

Thus, both standards provide crucial guidance for handling complaints impartially, reliably, and ensuring the protection of the whistleblower. Even though they are not certifiable, they contribute to more solid governance, encouraging the development of transparent and integral processes, which directly reflects in the trust of organizations.

Together, they play a vital role in the application of corrective measures and in the efficient communication of investigation results. Adopting them, especially considering the turbulent context of our country, is fundamental to promote transparency and corporate responsibility. This ultimately improves our companies and society as a whole.

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