The traditional route to ISO 27001 certification is time-consuming, tedious, and stressful.

Normally, you'd need to complete a thorough risk assessment and gap analysis, then design controls and write policies from scratch. You'd need to train your staff on security best practices and make sure they all review the new policies. And you'd have to update spreadsheets and grab hundreds of screenshots to use as evidence during your formal audit. 

It all means dedicating multiple team members and company leaders to overseeing compliance, and likely hiring a consultant to assist you.

Compliance automation software can do a lot of this heavy lifting for you, saving hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars on audit preparation and consultant fees. Below, we’ll explain what compliance automation software does and share tips for deciding if it’s the right choice for you.

What is compliance automation?

ISO 27001 automation software simplifies and speeds up the certification process. It eliminates hundreds of hours of manual work from the process of preparing for your audits and maintaining certification.

To help identify the most compelling benefits of compliance automation software, we used data from a 2024 survey of Secureframe users conducted by UserEvidence. Let's take a look at these benefits below.

Saves time and money

ISO 27001 compliance often requires organizations to spend their limited resources on manual tasks like s tracking dozens of documents in spreadsheets and grabbing screenshots to share with their auditor as evidence, filling out security questionnaires, and more. All of this busy work means less time for other high-priority, revenue-generating tasks.

A compliance automation platform that automates tasks required to get and stay ISO 27001 compliant — including evidence collection, continuous monitoring, risk assessments, and task management — can reduce the costs and efforts required to manage a compliance program. A platform with AI capabilities can further automate manual tasks, like performing risk assessments and updating ISO 27001 policies, to supercharge your teams and enable them to focus on higher priorities.

Reducing the manual overhead of compliance is a top benefit reported by Secureframe users. In the UserEvidence survey, 97% of Secureframe users said they reduced time spent on compliance tasks per month, with 76% saying they reduced that time by at least half. 85% also said they unlocked annual cost savings.

Spots gaps in your system configurations and internal controls

Understanding what gaps exist in your controls and policies and how to fill them is essential for achieving and maintaining ISO 27001 compliance. A compliance automation tool like Secureframe can automate this gap analysis. Once you integrate the audit-relevant softwares and tools you use every day, you can see exactly what you need to do based on your unique configurations and IT infrastructure. As you work through the ISO 27001 framework and complete activities within the Secureframe platform, it will update showing your progress percentage toward compliance, ensuring you have peace of mind going into your ISO 27001 audit.

But Secureframe goes beyond audit prep to help you implement best-in-class security practices. Our compliance experts offer advice based on your unique systems and business needs. And they’ll be able to identify gaps in your system and controls to keep your entire security program running smoothly. 

Due to this automation and expertise, 97% of Secureframe users said they strengthened their security and compliance posture.

Simplifies the audit process for both you and your auditor

Software solutions make the process of collecting and transferring evidence to your auditor easy and straightforward. It saves you both from the back-and-forth of submitting additional evidence or manually re-testing controls. Secureframe has established relationships with highly regarded auditors. It all adds up to faster audits with fewer headaches for everyone.

In fact, 95% of Secureframe users said they saved time and resources obtaining and maintaining compliance.

Makes it easier to maintain compliance

Secureframe can automatically collect evidence for your surveillance and recertification audits. And because our software continuously monitors your tech stack, you'll be able to fix issues quickly and proactively instead of scrambling in the weeks before an auditor shows up at your door.

The Secureframe platform also monitors your tech stack 24/7 to alert you of non-conformities, making it easier to maintain continuous compliance rather than scrambling to resolve issues in the weeks before an auditor shows up at your door. Our team of security, privacy, and compliance experts will also be there at every step of the compliance journey, from scoping your audit and identifying gaps to keeping your entire GRC program running smoothly. 

Using a compliance automation platform backed by experts to make continuous monitoring more cost-effective, consistent, and efficient unlocks a range of benefits, according to Secureframe customers. In the UserEvidence survey, 75% of Secureframe users said they reduced the risk of non-compliance and 71% said they improved visibility into security and compliance posture.

Simplifies compliance across frameworks

ISO 27001 has a lot of overlapping requirements with SOC 2 — approximately 80% according to AICPA criteria mapping. And both can be essential security frameworks for growing companies looking to expand into lucrative new markets.

Instead of starting from ground zero, compliance software can help map what you’ve already done for ISO 27001 to other information security frameworks. It'll be faster and easier to achieve additional certifications and avoid duplicated efforts.

As a result of Secureframe’s control mapping and other automation capabilities, 89% of Secureframe users surveyed by UserEvidence said they sped up time-to-compliance for multiple frameworks by at least 10%. Over half (53%) said they sped up time-to-compliance by 76% or more. 

While ISO 27001 automation can be incredibly beneficial, it’s important to avoid relying too much on a tool. Company stakeholders must continue to prioritize a strong security strategy, own audit scope and risk analysis, and understand how internal controls are designed and implemented. Use the software to automate tedious and time-consuming tasks like evidence collection, threat notifications, and vendor risk management.

Who needs compliance automation software?

Compliance management tools can be an essential part of your tech stack, but how do you know it’s time to look for a vendor?

If the following applies to your organization, a compliance automation tool probably makes sense for your needs:

  • Your company is (or customers are) in the healthcare, finance, retail, or other industries where compliance is required
  • Your target customers include enterprise brands outside of the US
  • Prospects are asking whether your organization has ISO 27001 certification
  • Your team is spending a significant amount of time and resources on highly manual and repetitive tasks like evidence collection
  • Issues are often identified right before or during an audit, leaving you to scramble to remediate them
  • You'd like peace of mind that you're maintaining compliance, even as the ISO 27001 framework is updated or your organization undergoes changes

How to choose a compliance automation platform

The security, privacy, and compliance software landscape is a fast-growing space, with an increasing number of vendors to choose from. Keep these questions in mind as you evaluate potential solutions to help decide which is the best fit for your organization: 

  • Are your chosen security frameworks supported? Be sure to consider any you may need as your company grows.
  • Is the number and depth of integrations enough to save your team from excess work? To evaluate this, ask vendors about the integrations you need. What do these integrations do and what data do they collect?
  • What is the level of customer support? What channels are available to receive support? Does that support extend through the audit itself?
  • Does the vendor have established relationships with respected auditing firms? 
  • What audit scope is included in the pricing package? Look for clear, transparent pricing without hidden costs.

Key features of compliance automation software

We also used data from the 2024 survey of Secureframe users conducted by UserEvidence to identify the key features of compliance automation below.

Continuous monitoring

Compliance doesn’t end with certification. Choose a tool that alerts you to issues that could threaten your compliance. Some tools will even provide detailed guidance for correcting each issue so you’ll know for sure it’s fixed. 

Secureframe goes one step further with Comply AI for Remediation, which automatically generates remediation guidance tailored to your environment. This improves the ease and speed of fixing failing controls in your cloud environment to improve test pass rate and get ISO 27001 audit ready.

84% of Secureframe users in the UserEvidence survey reported continuous monitoring to detect and remediate misconfigurations as an important Secureframe feature to them, making it the top answer. 

Automated evidence collection

Eliminating tedious, manual tasks is one of the core advantages of ISO 27001 compliance automation. Look for a solution that offers a wide range of integrations that automatically collect evidence to simplify your audits.

When asked what the most important Secureframe features are to them, 79% of Secureframe users said automated evidence collection.


Ideally, you want an automation platform that can act as a central place to track and hold evidence for your entire ISO 27001 compliance program. That means you'll want a tool that offers integrations to audit-relevant softwares and tools you use every day.

It's also important to look for a tool that offers both breadth and depth of integrations so that it's pulling in all the compliance data you need, not just user data like names and emails. For example, Secureframe's integration with Crowdstrike goes deeper than user data and actually checks device security hygiene. This depth of integration is possible because Secureframe has its own integration builder that allows it to build any integration into any system for automated evidence collection and continuous control monitoring, rather than outsource this to a third-party integration broker. This way, Secureframe has ultimate control over the breadth and depth of integrations so it can be the source of truth for any organization.

The UserEvidence survey of Secureframe users substantiated that this was a driving factor for compliance automation adoption. When asked what challenges led them to purchase Secureframe, 57% of Secureframe users reported a lack of centralized, single source of truth in storing and managing security compliance data.

Policy Management

If you don’t already have a set of internal security policies, creating them all from scratch can be time-consuming and confusing. Many ISO 27001 automation tools offer a library of templated policies that are approved by a team of auditors, making it much easier and faster to build out your policies and ensure they’re compliant with ISO 27001 requirements.

In addition to policy templates, the best tools provide a policy editor for quickly customizing policies and leaving comments, the ability to assign owners, and version history to track changes. You may also be able to track which employees have accepted ISO 27001 policies and send reminders to those who still need to in the same place that you create those policies. As your compliance program scales and the number of internal policies and employees increases, a tool like this can simplify and streamline policy management. 

The UserEvidence survey confirmed that robust policy management capabilities was a major benefit of compliance automation. When asked to select the most important Secureframe features to them, 68% of Secureframe users chose policy management.

Personnel Management

Educating your team on ISMS policies and processes is an essential part of ISO 27001 compliance. Compliance automation software can verify that every member of your team completes security training and policy reviews. When you need to revoke access for former employees, the software can make that easy, too.

61% of Secureframe users selected personnel management as one of the most important features to them.

Risk Management

Like many other compliance frameworks, ISO 27001 includes requirements for risk management. Some automation tools can help improve the accuracy, efficiency, and effectiveness of risk management.

Secureframe, for example, automatically gather information from different sources, figures out which risks are most important, suggests ways to reduce or handle these risks, and monitors risks over time. It also incorporates AI capabilities to automate risk assessments and other parts of the risk management process. 

As a result of these capabilities and benefits, 50% of Secureframe users in the UserEvidence survey reported risk management as an important Secureframe feature to them.

Vendor management

Managing vendor risk can be incredibly complicated. Choosing a tool that collects all of your vendor agreements and security certifications in one spot simplifies the entire process. 

The value of compliance automation on vendor management was supported by our UserEvidence survey findings as well. 55% of Secureframe users reported vendor risk management and vendor access management as important features to them.

Asset Inventory

Compiling and maintaining an inventory of assets manually in a spreadsheet is tedious and difficult to keep up-to-date. An ISO 27001 automation tool can keep an up-to-date inventory of all your assets for improved visibility and monitoring.

55% of Secureframe users selected endpoint/asset inventory as one of the most important features to them.

Expert, end-to-end support

Look for solutions that have a team of experienced former auditors on staff. At Secureframe, our team will help you before, during, and long after your audit.

ISO 27001 auditors will likely have follow-up questions no matter how well prepared you are. Having a team of compliance experts by your side can help you field technical questions and requests for additional evidence. Plus they can offer personalized security advice based on years of experience.

This type of support is a major benefit considering that 67% of Secureframe users said limited knowledge and expertise in compliance and security matters was a major challenge that led them to purchase Secureframe.

About the UserEvidence Survey

The data about Secureframe users was obtained through an online survey conducted by UserEvidence in February 2024. The survey included responses from 44 Secureframe users (the majority of whom were manager-level or above) across the information technology, consumer discretionary, industrials, financial, and healthcare industries.