How to Configure a Job Scheduler for Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Compliance

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During the late 1990s and early 2000s, major financial fraud was uncovered in several large public corporations, most notably Enron. In response, the landmark passage of the Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act of 2002 led to broad oversight, requiring all publicly traded companies and some privately-held companies to create and report on their internal accounting controls to the SEC.

To comply with the law, companies must now disclose their financial practices and have controls in place to ensure the accuracy and legality of their finances and financial reporting. They must also submit reports for evaluation to an independent, third-party auditor.

Three Top Job Scheduling Features in JAMS That Support SOX Compliance

When it comes to enterprise job scheduling, it’s important to look for product features that help support SOX compliance. As a Workload Automation solution, JAMS offers SOX compliance management software to help meet SOX regulatory requirements. JAMS automates IT processes, from simple batch processes to scripts to complex cross-platform workflows—and contains several essential elements that enable organizations to work toward meeting SOX requirements. Here we will examine three specific features in JAMS, including audit trails, credential and user access monitoring, and execution history reporting.

#1: Audit Trails

Within JAMS, an Audit Trail has two distinct meanings. One is from an entry or schedule perspective and the other is from a job definition perspective. For an entry, the audit trail displays events—items like manual intervention, notifications, dependencies that are being satisfied. These events take place along the lifecycle of a particular entry. From a definitions perspective, the audit trail tracks version history. For example, if someone changes a property or the job source, JAMS indicates what has changed, who has changed it, and when the change has occurred. JAMS also enables versions to be compared side by side. Both of these audit trail elements in JAMS contribute to controls that support ongoing SOX compliance.

#2: Credential and User Access Monitoring

Another important feature within JAMS that enables organizations to safeguard data and production job streams, and helps to meet SOX compliance, is to delineate the access and function of users within the job schedule. Understanding who is authorized to use the job scheduler and who defined the jobs to be run is essential to maintaining a secure system. Leveraging role-based security options in JAMS for credential and user access monitoring puts organizations in control of who is accessing the schedule and how they can affect the job stream, providing greater visibility into the safety and security of each workflow.

#3: Execution History Reporting

Having an execution history of all jobs run within a job scheduler and the history of jobs submitted—whether they were a success or failure—is essential for organizations to meet SOX compliance. JAMS keeps track of the history of all jobs run and offers tools that provide auditing capabilities to automatically track and monitor any changes made to a production job schedule and job source. The ability to quickly provide auditors with archived logs of the production job stream helps reveal how data was handled, when and where it was accessed, what deliverables were created, and how it moved through the enterprise.

A job scheduling solution like JAMS enables organizations to track execution history and create reports for job setup, job history, job success or failure, and more. Depending on the ways in which data is monitored and output changes overtime, IT professionals can customize how long each report is kept. This allows detailed and useful reports about production job streams and data to be preserved, helping further meet SOX compliance requirements. With automatic notification, if a job fails, a notification would be instantly sent and the team could intervene to make sure the job finishes as intended, while data surrounding this history would be reported on and delivered. This exception reporting allows organizations to take action only when necessary and still maintain full transparency.

A Quick Story of SOX Compliance with JAMS

Recently, one of the largest electric companies in the United States was beginning the process of a SOX audit. The publicly-traded company needed to reveal an audit trail, show job history, identify who had defined jobs, and see who its administrators were. The organization turned to the capabilities within JAMS to support its efforts without a tremendous lift by its IT team.

By leveraging JAMS, the utility company was able to show clear audit trails from both a schedule and definition perspective. The organization could easily access these audit trails, as well as credential and user access monitoring information, and its execution history reporting—all three areas of capabilities described in detail throughout this blog. This enabled the electric company to effectively address required components within its SOX audit and provide the required information quickly and easily.

Start Moving Forward with JAMS

Whether you are preparing for a SOX IT audit, or have just started looking for SOX compliance management software, we are here to help you navigate through these important regulatory requirements. Leveraging the tools available in JAMS will help alleviate the burden of documentation, reporting, and security so that you can be more confident in your transparency and ability to meet SOX requirements.

Learn How You Can Leverage JAMS to Comply with SOX Requirements
Discover how SOX compliance software, like JAMS from HelpSystems, can help you meet the demands of SOX requirements. See what JAMS can do for your organization in a demo today.

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