Do employees know the risks of violating company policies? Are they aware of how rules and regulations tie into daily work duties? In this article, I’ll highlight 9 ways to use real-world examples in your compliance online training course.
How To Use Real-World Examples In Compliance Online Training
Compliance topics aren’t typically emotionally-centered. For that matter, employees often find it difficult to connect with the content on a personal level. Which means that they are unable to engage in the online training experience and receive the full benefit. Fortunately, examples, stories, and case studies can help to alleviate these mandatory online training woes. Here are nine ways to incorporate real-world examples into your compliance online training program.
1. Company Policies In Action
It can be challenging for employees to understand how company policies impact their professional lives. They have to acknowledge that they’ve read the guidelines during onboarding. However, do they really know how to apply these policies in the workplace?
Real-world examples allow them to see how company protocols translate on-the-job. For example, the story might feature an employee who calls in sick 5-minutes before their shift, instead of the 2-hour minimum that is stated in your company policy. This results in a "domino effect" that leaves their co-workers shorthanded and overwhelmed.
2. Emphasize The Importance Of Health And Safety Training
Employees know that your organization is serious about health and safety training. But are they truly aware of why it’s so essential to follow protocols? Or how violations can have a far-reaching effect? Real-world examples highlight the importance of health and safety compliance, as well as the negative repercussions of not following the correct procedures. An example of this is if an employee fails to properly clean up a spill, which leads to an on-the-job injury.
3. Tie Regulations Into Real-World Applications
Compliance training is often perceived as theoretical knowledge. Employees must memorize the guidelines, but the information usually fades over time, especially if they don’t have to apply the policies on a daily basis. However, examples tie the compliance knowledge to real-world applications. You can show employees how rules and regulations relate to their work responsibilities or how they impact the industry. Real-world examples even give you the opportunity to explore the history behind local rules from a new perspective. For instance, a health and safety law was put into effect after a work-related accident injured numerous employees.
4. Stress The Consequences Of Compliance Violations
Your online training program already covers the negative repercussions of violating policies and regulations. But employees may find it difficult to comprehend the full extent and risks involved. Real-world examples give them a firsthand look at what happens when employees fail to comply. In addition to endangering the safety of others, you can also explore the company’s response to compliance violations. For example, the employee in the example is put on suspension while the organization investigates harassment charges. You should also clarify what constitutes a violation and the consequence "spectrum" involved. For instance, one strike warrants a warning.
5. Simplify Complex Tasks And Protocols
Involved compliance tasks, process, or protocols can be difficult to comprehend. Even breaking them down into step-by-step walkthroughs or online training tutorials may not be enough. However, real-world examples improve comprehension by putting everything into context. For instance, the story involves safe handling procedures and how the main character properly stores the merchandise. Thus, employees are able to not only explore the task from a different perspective, but also understand the "why" behind each step.
6. Personalize Data Security
Data security is a high priority for organizations, especially in the digital age. Real-world examples personalize this compliance issue by highlighting how it affects employees on an individual level, even if it’s by proxy. Your staff can see how a data breach impacts the organization as a whole, and trickles down to every member of the team. For example, sensitive information falls into the wrong hands and makes certain staff members vulnerable to personal attacks. As a matter of fact, one of the most notable benefits of real-world examples is that they personalize compliance topics across the board from COI to dress code policies.
7. Explore Ethical Dilemmas
Ethical compliance issues usually involve some degree of emotionality or personal motivations. An employee who divulges trade secrets to a competitor does so for monetary gain or other incentives. Although selling merchandise to a family member at a steep discount can be attributed to love and compassion, it still violates company policy. Real-world examples turn compliance policies into relatable stories. They form an emotional connection with the employee, but still explore the subject matter from a practical standpoint. For instance, the employee can see how their actions negatively affect their co-workers or make their jobs more difficult.
8. Transform Examples Into Interactive Scenarios
One of the downsides of using real-world examples in compliance online training is that they are text-based. Employees are only able to read about the real-world applications or repercussions, instead of immersing themselves in the situation. However, you can add a dose of interactivity by transforming examples into simulations and branching scenarios. Use the example as a framework, and then develop interactive online training materials around it. Incorporate realistic characters, settings, images, and sound effects to make them more relatable.
9. Turn Real-World Accounts Into Online Training Materials
Invite employees to share their own real-world accounts, then convert them into examples, branching scenarios, or simulations. These firsthand experiences are a valuable resource, as they can enhance the realism of your compliance online training content. After all, employees lived through them and gained new insight as a result.
These real-world example applications put the information into perspective. Employees can see how company policies and regulations affect their everyday job duties. They can also understand why it’s so essential to follow protocols and continually build their compliance-related knowledge.
Is your compliance online training achieving the desired results? Watch the recorded webinar How to Make Compliance Simple Yet Effective to discover tips for your organization.