Does the thought of your last compliance training seminar cause you to yawn? This is only natural. Compliance – the adherence to legal provisions and internal company requirements – is a rather dry topic. Courses on the subject are often considered compulsory exercises that have to be endured at regular intervals. Yet compliance affects most areas of a company and covers regulations against the formation of cartels to dealing with insider information and data privacy right through to environmental standards and occupational safety, making it an undisputed key issue.
Violations, such as those against antitrust laws, can turn out to be very costly for companies and employees. High fines and job losses are the most common consequences. The damage to the reputation of employees and companies cannot be underestimated either. Customers place a great deal of importance on fair working conditions and adherence to environmental standards. Investors and suppliers are also paying an increased amount of attention to compliant behavior. So, how can we embed compliance in the minds of employees so that they behave in a compliant manner in their everyday lives?
Key success factors of compliance training: Relevance, emotions, and challenges
Stimulating employees is a decisive factor in the success of compliance training. This is achieved by using relevant, challenging content that appeals to learners on an emotional level. There is nothing more annoying than struggling through dry information that is completely irrelevant to the learner. For this reason, it is essential to ask the following questions: How, why, and when is compliance relevant to employees in their everyday working lives? This way, you can offer training content precisely tailored to participants, their level of knowledge, and their function within the company. Using everyday situations to illustrate the right and wrong way to act is key. Motivation levels increase when employees recognize why the training is good for them and for the company, for example, because compliant behavior protects from criminal proceedings, fines, and job losses.
Knowledge of compliance also remains in the minds of employees when they learn through understanding as well as being addressed on an emotional level. Emotions can be sparked by placing information in exciting stories and using eye-catching graphic designs. You can break down the content by mixing different media, including images, videos, simulations, and audio – via podcasts, for example. It is ‘the more, the better’ when it to the sensory channels that are addressed. What’s more, learners remember information better when they have exchanged ideas about it with others. Social media makes it possible to do this across different company sites and departments. It is best when learning is enjoyable and the learner can acquire and test knowledge hands on in a protected environment. That’s why everyone is talking about game-based learning, or in other words, learning with serious games. Game-based learning also prevents the content from becoming overly theoretical. Employees are confronted with realistic situations where they have to act and make decisions independently. This ensures that lessons learned are more than just gray theory.
And finally, it is necessary to pose challenges. Confront your learners with scenarios that require them to make real decisions. It is important to test the knowledge learned using challenging tests. This is the only way to ensure that participants do not just randomly select one answer after another, but rather really think about what they have learned.
E-learning: Custom solutions for compliance training
At LearnChamp, we consider e-learning to be particularly well-suited for the transfer of compliance knowledge. When it comes to dry subject matter like legal regulations and codes of conduct, electronic learning is at least enjoyable for participants. They can learn whenever and wherever suits them best. Thanks to the new responsive formats, employees can learn when they have a few minutes to spare when on the go, either on the commute to work or when waiting for a flight at the airport. In addition, it is possible to offer reminders that periodically highlight content on which employees performed poorly in tests. Checklists and brief summaries help provide access to knowledge when it is really needed. This enables learners to learn in small chunks.
e-learning does not gobble up a massive training budget. In fact, it is often more cost-effective than classroom training (see here for an impressive case for cost savings through e-learning). Why, you ask? On the one hand, it is possible to provide information to specific target groups using personalized access methods. This allows you to save yourself the unnecessary expense of having to hire instructors and your employees save valuable time that they can use for their core tasks. Moreover, reporting tools assume responsibility for documenting the entire learning history, ensuring you are very well prepared to cope with audits.
Of course, e-learning cannot solve all compliance problems. Corporate culture is indispensable when it comes to establishing compliant behavior within a company. If you are interested in knowing how to shape corporate culture and what you need to keep in mind, keep an eye on our blog. We are going to write about this in the near future.
How do you approach compliance training in your company? Do you see any room for improvement? If so, get in touch with us! We are happy to advise you.