How to Automate Compliance Training

How to Automate Compliance Training

Employee compliance training can be traced back to 1908 in the US. Yes, that was before computers, the Internet, and training software. So, it's handled by now, right?

Not so fast. Given "the online nature of things," an increasingly remote workforce, and continuous updates and changes in legislation and standards, it's not practical to go the pen and paper route anymore.

Larger companies have one or more dedicated compliance officers. But if they're handling all the facets of compliance training manually, they risk becoming overloaded with the plethora meetings, courses, printouts, emails, etc. needed to make sure that both employees and the corporation have what they need. And everyone is aware of how organizing and archiving paper documents soon becomes (and remains) unmanageable.

Why Automate?

But how can this be accomplished without burning up precious time and effort on the part of your workforce? Automation. And that doesn't mean emailing a bunch of documents and video links to your employees. The most effective way to automate employee compliance training nowadays is with a Learning Management System (LMS).

One huge advantage of automating the compliance process is the ability to document the completion of compliance requirements electronically in the form of certificates that are issued to employees upon successful completion of a compliance course. Since corporations are audited regularly to prove their compliance, automation of the training process ensures that all necessary compliance documents can be stored in a single location - making the process much easier to manage.

Another advantage of creating compliance training courses with eLearning software is that you only have to do it once. You can then use it to train or update all employees as needed from then on. Make modifications to accompany changes in legislation and regulations as they occur, and voilà, your courses remain up to date at all times!

How to Automate Compliance Training

And now, the nuts and bolts of automating compliance training for your employees:

Step 1. Create eLearning courses

Employee compliance training doesn't just provide orientation regarding general company rules and procedures but also educates staff members on relevant laws and regulations that, if not followed, can result in legal liability for the organization. Here are some common aspects you can cover in your courses:

● Anti-harassment. To harass is "to vex, trouble, or annoy continually or chronically" and can involve verbal, visual, or physical conduct, such as bullying or sexual harassment. The employee needs to receive a definition of the problem and strategies for dealing with it.

● Diversity training. The organization's dynamic, worldview, and reach are enhanced to the degree that employees learn how to embrace their colleagues' uniqueness in terms of gender, language, color, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, age, etc.

● Data protection and privacy. Employees need to know how to protect personal data and prevent clients' data from being lost or used inappropriately and be aware of the penalties for failing to do so.

● Business ethics. This involves educating employees not only on the company's code of ethics but laws and regulations that apply to that industry and how these impact their job responsibilities.

● Workplace safety. Although unique hazards exist for some industries, even office spaces pose risks and employees will need first aid, fire, and disaster training at the very least.

Now that you know what to cover in your compliance training courses, let’s see how to author them.

There are a number of software for creating training courses and some are exceedingly user-friendly. iSpring Suite is a case in point: if you can use PowerPoint, you can create employee compliance training courses that are both informative and interesting to take - and no knowledge of coding is required.

You probably already have most or all of the contents you need for your training - such as instructive videos, images, and PDF files with OSHA standards - but iSpring Suite lets you assemble them both quickly and easily into an engaging format that keeps your learners connected to the content.

As you likely have different teams with separate needs, you'll probably end up creating specialized training courses for each group. So, you need to define the topics to be addressed for each group, write a script outline, and create a storyboard. Subject matter experts (SMEs) and legal professionals might also come into play when establishing course content.

Here are a few examples of how iSpring Suite can allow you to create engaging content for your compliance courses.

› Interaction

Using the Tabs interaction, you can enhance business ethics by facilitating whistle-blowing in cases of unethical practices like corruption, discrimination, and harassment. For example, the interaction can illustrate how to respond to a terrorist attack.

how to respond to a terrorist attack

› Simulated scenarios

Beyond augmenting employees' understanding of compliance topics like safety rules, harassment, diversity, and inclusion, providing simulated scenarios of how to handle difficult situations can prepare the learner to act appropriately and immediately if these
situations occur.

This image of a simulated scenario of how to deal with armed robbery is an example:

how to deal with armed robbery is an example

› Quizzes

At the end of the day, learners have to show that the material presented has been absorbed and retained. The best way to do this is with quizzes. iSpring Suite provides a large variety of question types, including fill-in-the-blanks, drag-and-drops, sequencing, and matching games.

This is a slide from the fire safety quiz:

fire safety quiz

As opposed to purchasing a prefabricated cookie-cutter course, since every company's needs are unique, it behooves an organization to create their own custom-made compliance course to meet their individual requirements. This way, you'll always be in control of your distinct content and can make sure it serves the purpose it was intended for.

Step 2. Upload your courses to an LMS

Now that you have created your compliance courses, you need to get them online so they can be assigned to relevant employees and departments. That's what a Learning Management System (LMS) does, and iSpring Learn does a great job of just that. Here are some of its benefits:

› Structure flexibility

As your different employees and departments have different needs, you'll want to channel the specially tailored courses to the appropriate learners. iSpring Learn allows you to send the right courses to learners who might be working in different states or even countries with very specific legislation. And if you develop or manage compliance training for a multinational corporation, it's good to know that iSpring Learn functions in 14 different languages.

› Groups

Although your organization is organized into different departments, you will also need to handle employees that are in different groups. For example, as new employees need to be brought up to speed on compliance regulations, you can create a "New Hires" group and these learners can be enrolled automatically.

› Repeated enrollment

As legislation and regulations are constantly changing, employees will need to take refresher courses on the same topics. This can be managed easily by programming automatic course re-enrollments at specified intervals.

› Blended learning

While individual remote learning is becoming more and more relevant, meetings and in-class instruction will always have their place. Whether a physical or online virtual meeting or classroom approach is used, iSpring Learn allows you to schedule events and keep track of who attended.

› Mobile access

With the free mobile app, employees can study anywhere and anytime, whether online or offline.

Step 3. Keep track of learners’ results

To make sure your employees remain compliant, you need to keep track of their progress and completion rate and help them out if things get bogged down. In other words, you need to perform internal audits to flag potential nonconformity before you get audited, so that when that happens, it is just a formality. iSpring Learn allows you to keep on top of things at all times by allowing you to track and audit the entire compliance process.

You can run a quick report and see exactly where things stand. You'll immediately know how much time each individual spent in the learning process, who still needs training, and if there are problems in your flow design.

To Sum Up

Long gone is the time when ballpoint pens and copy machines ruled the day and mandated printing, distributing, sorting, filing, and the extensive lists that held it all together. In the current world of compliance, you need to be online or you're off the playing field.

The bottom line is that automating your compliance training will ensure that your employees remain up to date at all times.

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Helen Colman

Helen is an editor and content strategist at iSpring. She enjoys combining in-depth research with expert knowledge of the eLearning industry.

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