SOC 2 audits are costly from both a time and resources perspective.
How do you make sure you’re prepared to pass your audit?
Remember that a SOC 2 report doesn’t involve running down a fixed checklist of controls.
The auditor tests your controls, examines your documentation, and evaluates whether your system supports the Trust Services Criteria included in your audit.
A SOC 2 readiness assessment helps you determine which TSC might be relevant for your organization.
It also leads directly to the next important step: the gap analysis.
That’s where you compare your controls to the relevant TSC and determine what you need to do to fulfill each one.
What is a SOC Readiness Assessment?
A readiness assessment is an examination performed by a service auditor. It determines how ready your organization is for a successful SOC 2 audit. It will also help you spot potential gaps in your controls and create a plan for fixing them.
Think of it as a test run before moving forward with your actual SOC 2 audit.
A readiness assessment helps you answer:
- Is your organization ready for a SOC 2 examination?
- Are your current controls enough to prove compliance?
- Are there any gaps you need to fix before your SOC 2 examination?
- How can you fix those gaps and confirm that they have been fixed?
How Much Does a SOC 2 Readiness Assessment Cost?
A professional SOC 2 readiness assessment typically costs between $10-17,000. Cost depends on the size of your organization and the scope of your audit.
During your readiness assessment, your auditor will walk through your company’s services. They’ll identify controls that will help you meet the relevant TSC. At the end of the readiness assessment, they’ll issue a letter summarizing their findings.
SOC 2 Audit Readiness
Some companies choose to conduct their readiness assessment internally as a SOC 2 self-assessment.
Whether you decide to do it yourself or hire a consultant, a readiness assessment typically follows these steps:
- Map existing controls to your Trust Services Criteria. What controls and documentation already exist? Unless you have SOC 2 automation software, this likely means logging specific Trust Services Criteria. Then mapping them to your existing controls in a spreadsheet.
- Check for gaps. You might discover missing controls. Or discover you need to redesign processes, implement employee training programs, or document more evidence for your existing controls.
- Develop a remediation plan. Try to include specific timelines and deliverables for closing any gaps. Identify an individual who will be responsible for tracking progress.
Be sure to conduct your readiness assessment well in advance of your actual audit. You'll need to give yourself enough time to fix any identified issues.