The pandemic has permanently changed how organizations of all sizes work. A substantial increase in hybrid and remote work has presented new compliance challenges, and organizations have responded by growing their compliance functions. A recent study shows that there were 257 average daily regulatory alerts across 190 countries in 2020 and keeping up with regulatory changes continues to be the top compliance challenge.
To help organizations simplify compliance and reduce risk, we built Microsoft Compliance Manager, generally available since September 2020. Compliance Manager translates complex regulatory requirements into specific recommended actions and makes them available through premium assessment templates, covering over 300 regulations and standards. By leveraging the universal mapping of actions and controls, premium assessment templates allow customers to comply with several requirements across multiple regulations or standards with one action, providing an efficient solution to manage overlapping compliance requirements. Premium assessment templates along with built-in workflows and continuous compliance updates allow organizations to constantly assess, monitor, and improve their compliance posture.
To meet customers where they are in their compliance journey, we are excited to announce that Compliance Manager premium assessment templates will no longer require a Microsoft 365 E5 or Office 365 E5 license as a prerequisite. This update enables all enterprise customers to assess compliance with the regulations most relevant to them and meet their unique compliance needs. Starting July 1st, 2021, all Enterprise customers, both commercial and government, can purchase premium assessment templates as long as they have any Microsoft 365 or Office 365 subscription. Customers who have already purchased a premium assessment template or are using the default templates included with their subscription will not experience any disruption or change. Customers with Microsoft 365 E3 or Office 365 E1/E3 subscriptions will now be able to see the list of 300+ premium assessment templates in their tenants. The capability to create a new template, customize an existing template, or add customized actions to a given template will continue to require a Microsoft 365 E5 or Office 365 E5 subscription.