Most HR professionals see compliance training as something the organization has to do, under penalty of law. But what if it could actually bring value to your company, when done well? What if it could revolutionize your company culture and make your workplace safer, more productive, and ethical?
To understand how compliance programs can be transformational in these ways, it helps to understand just how much room there is for improvement:
- As much as 70% of harassment goes unreported.
- When it is reported, the victim faces retaliation of some form in 75% of cases.
- The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) alone collected $164.5 million for workers alleging harassment in 2016.
- Workplace bullying is costing U.S. businesses up to $360 billion annually in lost productivity, absenteeism, and turnover, as well as in increased medical costs.
- 48% of employees who are the target of bullying at work end up quitting their job.
- The median judgment in discrimination lawsuits is roughly $200,000, and 1 in 4 judgments are in excess of $500,000.
- 5,190 workers were killed on the job in 2016, at a rate of 3.6 per 100,000 full-time equivalent workers—on average, more than 99 a week, or more than 14 deaths every day.
- Workplace discrimination against employees based on race, gender, and sexual orientation has cost U.S. businesses somewhere around an estimated $64 billion annually.
- 31% of chief compliance officers do not know, or do not communicate, conduct and culture lessons across their organizations.
- Only 29% of organizations report that they assess compliance proficiencies and skills of their staff on an ongoing basis.
- Only 12% of organizations have an advanced compliance and ethics training program. Nearly 40% of organizations rate their programs as basic or reactive. 23% of companies do not have a formal compliance training plan in place at all.
These statistics come from a number of studies which we gathered in our whitepaper, “Why Compliance Training is More Than a Checkbox: Five Ways Companies Can Do Better for Their Employees and for Their Mission.” That whitepaper sets out, in detail, just how improved compliance training can change your organization for the good—and how to start.
Five Elements of Transformative Compliance Training
For example, our whitepaper covers the five things a good compliance training program must do in order to make lasting change:
1. Considers the Target Audience
The right training tailors topics to address the appropriate audience. Each member of your team will respond better to different types of training.
Managers need to know how to enforce rules, for example. Until you show them how to discourage bad behavior, you may not see widespread cultural change and adoption. Employees may need to feel comfortable learning how to observe and report harassment and bullying.
2. Utilizes Proven Instructional Design Methodologies
You’re not going to redefine your culture by presenting a single video during onboarding. So how do you keep up a consistent pace of training? Shorter (7-11 minute) blocks of information are far easier for your staff to absorb. That content should also be well-produced, professionally executed, memorable, and current. Employees will likely not take anything too seriously if they see actors wearing clothing that was fashionable two decades before they joined the workforce.
3. Leverages Blended Learning
Blended learning environments teach topics using an online component, along with discussion, case studies, and Q&A moderated by a live instructor. An instructor assumes employees bring some basic knowledge with them when they enter a classroom (whether that’s live or virtual). That instructor can then dive into more engaging activities that deliver lessons more likely to stick with trainees over time.
4. Uses Climate Surveys
Anonymous, confidential, and well-executed climate surveys uncover workplace disparities and point trainers towards future issues before they erupt. No one is free from biases, and all organizations have blind spots and areas for improvement. A climate survey unearths where those are, fostering opportunities and topics for further conversation and training.
5. Includes Consistent Follow-up
A learning management system (LMS) should be used to schedule future training sessions and administer quizzes regularly. This helps generate insights into what is sticking and what areas need more attention, or a quick refresh.
There Is Even More to Compliance Training
There is more to understanding the role compliance training can play, too. Our whitepaper also covers:
- The benefit of compliance training beyond the costs associated with lawsuits and settlements
- Why corporations should take a more “holistic approach” to compliance training
- Policies that will need to be implemented to compliment your training