Compliance training: system satisfaction or behavioural impact?

We are happy to report a shift in corporate compliance thinking. Corporate compliance used to be about “checking the correct box(es)”, i.e. system satisfaction or legal satisfaction. We are experiencing a growing interest in the actual impact of corporate compliance on the behaviour of co-workers and as a result, on corporate culture.

Corporate compliance training

Corporate compliance training is a siginificant part of this development. Health & Safety, Information Security or Code of Conduct are no longer lengthy documents for people to read and sign. Co-workers are being trained actively on these, and more compliance subjects.

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s said it already: “Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.”

In reality, successful compliance training is one of the hardest programmes to create. ‘Compliance’ is another word for ‘rule’ – and who likes rules? However, there are ways to make compliance fun (i.e. interesting) for your co-workers. Here are four cornerstones and five elements to evaluate the effectiveness of a sucessful corporate compliance training programme.

Cornerstone 1. Well-defined goals

What behaviour do you want to change? The ultimate goal of compliance training is full adherence to all regulations and automatic application by all co-workers on a daily basis. But to get there, employee behaviour must change. So, all smaller goals that support the big one must be defined.

Cornerstone 2. Good communication

Without a clear view of the ultimate goal, compliance training can feel like trying to walk through a large field and getting lost deep in the weeds. The little details are important, but if co-workers are only concerned with memorising them, they risk losing motivation and may consider the training a painful experience.

Cornerstone 3. Focused instructional design

When training is customised for each person and their specific responsibilities, critical information is emphasized, and understanding is verified. The “good-to-know” content, on the other hand, only plays a supporting role. Partnering with a provider experienced at custom content development is an effective way to do this.

Cornerstone 4. Monitoring to verify results

Any business expense must be measured against its effect on the bottom line. In the case of compliance training, that means adherence to the regulations must be verified. A proactive monitoring programme should include procedures that verify the training was properly absorbed. For example, tracking the number of incidents before and after compliance training would verify co-workers are following the procedures they were trained on.

Evaluating the effectiveness of your compliance training programme

Whether your compliance training strategy focuses on keeping your workforce legally compliant or feeds into your wider learning culture and organisational KPIs, it is important to regularly review and evaluate the effectiveness of your current corporate learning.

1. Effective implementation and completion rates

Implementation of learning & development programmes has caused many organisations serious headaches. Moving your compliance training online is a great way to increase ROI and improve efficiency as it reduces admin time for your L&D teams. It also frees up your workforce to incorporate compliance training into their working lives.

Completion rates are one of the primary ways to evaluate the effectiveness of your courses. Effective implementation isn’t just about how the training is introduced to your organisation, but how it is received by your co-workers. Typically, compliance training completion rates increase considerably when a mobile or blended approach to learning is undertaken.

2. Learning and retention rates

Another key metric to consider is the rate of information retention with your co-workers. There are a number of ways you can measure this within your workforce. It is worth using a course with gamification or quizzing at the end of each chunk of information. This allows your co-workers to directly engage with their course. It also can give you direct statistics of information retention via the Learning Management System (LMS).

Another way to evaluate retention rates is to introduce refresher training. This can also be generated through your LMS as a recurring training course. Once a course becomes refresher training, simply ask your employees to complete the quiz without the training course to see how well they have retained information.

3. Employee feedback 

Co-worker feedback is an essential part of any evaluation process. This feedback is an invaluable source of information about usability, information retention, and engagement. Also, co-workers are more likely to remain engaged with your courses if they feel they have a say in how they are run. Online training programmes often come with integrated feedback tools. Look for the ones with feedback per course and integration within the LMS.

4. Knowledge transfer and learned behaviours

One step beyond information retention, effective compliance training should look at shifting the behaviours of your workforce. Whether you want to change attitudes towards learning throughout your organisation, align your training objectives to your KPIs, or simply line up co-worker behaviour with new and updated workplace legislation, it is important to consistently measure how these behaviours are changing.

This can be done in a variety of ways. Similarly to information retention, you can look at quizzing your co-workers or asking them to take you through a demonstration of their newly learned skills and behaviours. Alternatively, you can look at skill-sharing and team-building exercises focussing on the compliance training course(s) at hand.

5. Performance and results 

Assessing completion rates is just one way of measuring the performance of both your co-workers and your compliance trainings. Another is looking at the performance of your workforce on the job. This one is a little more difficult to measure as it will need to adapt to each industry and job level.

Compliance training, when implemented effectively will not only ensure legal compliance across your workforce but also improve their performance in a wide range of areas. You will see this reflected in any number of organisational KPIs from sales figures to efficiencies to the number of customers helped in a specific timespan.

Read also:
When is a training a proper training?
If you can answer one of these learning questions with yes, this is for you

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