Five things to expect from modern compliance training

September 14, 2016 Christopher Sindik

Some things are just expected when you buy a new car. For example, if the car doesn’t come with a CD player, keyless entry, cruise control, anti-lock brakes and power steering, it is hard to justify the purchase as good value for money. We’ve all come to expect these features (and much more) from a new car, and our expectations have changed from 20 years ago when such features were add-ons. Even back in the 1950s, seat belts were not standard equipment in many cars. Equipment that is optional or even a luxury one day can eventually become essential and mandatory. However, it seems that expectations around online compliance training haven’t changed a great deal over the past 20 years.

Similar to the bells and whistles of a new car, companies should start to expect more from their online compliance training. Certain items such as shorter courses, videos, an engaging narrative, multiple languages, activities, games and a functional learning management system should be a minimum.

A recent poll by The Red Flag Group found that 30 percent of a compliance officer’s time is dedicated to training and communications. This is a large percentage of time, and could be somewhat attributable to using 20-year old training techniques. Here are five truly modern, and cutting edge features that all companies should expect from their online training:

  1. Adaptive training – The era of the voluminous, 100-page training catalogue is over. Nobody wants to sift through hundreds of courses to find the right one for their employees. The onus of picking the right course is placed on compliance professionals. The criteria for course selection centres around the title and country of the person taking the training; little else. Adaptive training automatically selects content based on each employee’s actual work and their specific set of risks.
  2. One course to rule them all – The less time it takes for an employee to complete their annual training curriculum, the better. It saves the company money and it allows employees to get back to work. Technology makes it possible to roll out a single course to a user to cover all of their risk topics. The software does the work of pulling out the salient points that the employee needs to know about. Less wasted time, more productivity.
  3. Everyone gets the same course – Managing course reminders, completion certifications, invitations for dozens of different courses and dozens of languages across eight business units quickly becomes a logistical nightmare. For example, when staff in Australia receive a course in French, it causes confusion and embarrasses the compliance department. However, using an adaptive training solution is simple as everyone receives the same course. The software picks the right language and risk topics, and someone has either completed that single course or not for their yearly compliance training.
  4. It has global appeal and is not United States centric – Audiences are global and they can quickly switch off if they see that a course was made entirely by and for a United States audience. The need for training a global audience has never been greater and the content needs to appeal to everyone. Watch out for clichés, references, policies or customs that do not relate to a global audience.
  5. End of course tests aren’t valuable – It is a trap. What do you do if someone doesn’t pass the test? What if that same person goes on to engage in bribery and the company knew they didn’t pass the test? Does the test actually show the person learned something or that they can remember the right answers after 10 or fewer attempts? The truth is that, while it may feel reassuring to have this test at the end of the course, it is often an inefficient use of time.
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