As a compliance training manager, you face a different set of challenges compared to other training managers. You have very important issues to consider – the environment in the workplace, relationships with third parties and partners, and compliance with your industry specific laws and regulations.
Your training materials pose a huge challenge too. Most often than not, they comprise heavy manuals, several pages of dry, cumbersome laws, and thick policy documents. Working with this ammunition you need to ensure that your employees actually read the material, understand what is acceptable, what is not, and comply with the laws. Else, you will be liable to severe damages including loss of reputation and monetary losses.
You also need to ensure that the workplace remains a safe environment where employees are all happy and provided equal opportunities irrespective of cultural, linguistic, regional, religious, physical, or other differences. The onus of ensuring that all employees comply with laws, wherever applicable, and participate in transparent, healthy dealings with external partners also lies with you. But all these issues need not overwhelm you.
Training is the key!
Training is the best way to educate employees on compliance issues so that unsolicited outcomes are avoided and the workplace presents an open, happy, conducive atmosphere to all. But what is the best training methodology? With the huge leaps in technological advancements we are witnessing today, online learning, more specifically, e-learning has emerged as the undisputed winner.
Let’s see how e-learning can be your best buddy in educating your employees on compliance issues.
Learning is most effective when it is based on our choices and experiences. They become deeply etched in our minds and we do not forget them. Drawing on this concept, e-learning courses can be constructed with scenarios which present learners situations they are likely to face in real-time. These scenarios provide the background information and require employees to take decisions. Learning is built based on their choices.
Learning can be personalized by tracing different learning paths based on employee decisions and thus focus more on the topics they need guidance on. This will engage learner interest and motivate them to learn better as learning will be tied directly to their needs.
Your procurement manager visits a vendor to decide on a particular item and place the Purchase Order. The vendor suggests raising the Purchase Order in a way that distorts the price a bit so that both of you save on taxes. This sounds good, but your procurement manager is confused if he can really do this. What could help him in this scenario is a small nugget of information that deals with the point in question. If you have a repository of courses dealing with third party relations, the procurement manager can access them based on his need just before visiting the vendor and be ready for the meeting.
E-learning courses can be designed as short, standalone modules with each focusing on a single learning point. Learners can take these modules whenever they need them on the device of their choice. This improves the effectiveness of learning and makes employees efficient in their tasks.
Another effective way of training employees on compliance issues is through role-based learning. Each group of employees can be assigned a course that deals specifically with their responsibilities and rights. They should also know who they are responsible for (if Managers and above), and whom they can contact if needed. This approach will help them understand their role in maintaining workplace integrity.
Collaborative Learning and Job-Aids
E-learning provides ample scope for collaborative learning by providing learners links to discussion forums where they can meet experts in the respective domains and discuss issues in more detail. They can get their doubts clarified too.
Additionally, e-learning courses are a great platform to provide resources such as PDFs and other resource material that learners can download and refer whenever needed. For example, if the course deals with the anti-harassment law of a particular state, presenting the entire law in the course will be too cumbersome and is in fact, not recommended. A better approach would be to present the crucial points in the course and provide the entire law as a PDF that can be downloaded.
These are a few points that emphasize the flexibility offered by e-learning for compliance training. The next time you need to roll out a compliance course, don’t let the thought daunt you. Just adopt e-learning and enjoy the benefits.
Know of other novel ways of using e-learning for compliance training? Do share with us.