Sandra Bledsoe

Compliance Training: Everything You Need to Know

Image via Unsplash by Campaign Creators

Compliance training is any education your employees need to meet federal, state, or local legislation and guidelines. This makes it an essential part of your company’s risk management program.

Compliance training teaches employees about the laws and policies that relate to their industry or job. These may be laws set by federal, state, or local governments or policies implemented by the company. All employees must participate in compliance training. Participation is usually a condition for employment.

Relevant compliance training courses for your business depend on your location, industry, and activities. The following are some of the most common compliance training courses required for businesses in the United States:

  • Workplace safety (Occupational Safety and Health Administration)
  • Workplace violence
  • Workplace substance abuse
  • Anti-harassment
  • Information security (including cybersecurity), data protection, and privacy
  • Business ethics
  • Human resources law
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion

Why Is Compliance Training Important?

Engaging your entire workforce in compliance training has several benefits for your business and its workplace culture. This training is important because it:

  • Makes sure your company satisfies its legal obligations and responsibilities
  • Ensures employees understand their responsibilities working for your company
  • Helps create a physically and psychologically safe and supportive workplace where all people treat others with respect
  • Gives employees the confidence that they can handle challenging situations
  • Helps employees act with integrity and reduces the risk employees will cause harm to other employees, customers, and other business contacts
  • Helps employees recognize acts that violate guidelines so they can hold others and the business accountable
  • Helps employees retain their jobs because they understand what is legally required of them
  • Protects your customers’ data and privacy
  • Minimizes the risk of financial penalties, prosecution, or closure for noncompliance detected through compliance audits or legal complaints
  • Helps you maintain a positive business reputation by fostering a good work culture and reducing the risk of complaints
  • Increases workplace productivity as employees operate in a culture that supports their efforts and makes them feel good
  • Reduces absenteeism through injury and emotional distress
  • Makes you eligible for business insurance

Steps for Running Compliance Training Programs

Careful planning and considering your requirements and limitations will help you run compliance programs that satisfy legal obligations and benefit your business. Follow these steps when planning and implementing your compliance training initiatives:

  1. Identify essential legislation and regulation. Read the laws and guidelines thoroughly so you understand what your employees need to know and the reasons why.
  2. Conduct a company risk assessment. Understanding the areas of high risk in your company can help you prioritize which training plans you should put in place first.
  3. Consult the leadership team. Once you’ve identified the need for compliance training, engage your leadership team. Work with them to make sure the training program meets their goals and suits their employees. When your leadership team supports the training, they can tell employees why it matters and motivate them to get the most from the program.
  4. Evaluate the criteria. Compliance training programs must teach employees certain skills and information. Guidelines often state how long training programs should take to complete and any essential components they should include, such as assessments. Consider all these requirements when developing your compliance training program.
  5. Acquire credible training resources. Make sure your training resources are from quality sources and are current to reflect the latest policies and guidelines.
  6. Deliver training course. You might deliver compliance training through face-to-face training sessions, online methods, or a combination of these.
  7. Record training results. You should always record employee progress and their completion of compliance training programs. Some guidelines state how long you should keep records for. Other times you must judge for yourself how long to maintain your records. A learning management system, which lets you see employee results at a glance, is a great option. Discover what a learning management system is in this article.
  8. Collect data and feedback. You should always aim to improve your compliance training over time. Collect relevant data about your company’s performance to gauge whether participants have retained and applied the knowledge. Issue satisfaction surveys and encourage employees to suggest areas for improvement. Use this information to make your training programs better. Learn more about collecting employee feedback in this article.
  9. Repeat the process as required. Some compliance training is only required once, while other programs need refresher courses. Make sure you know how often your employees need training so it’s performed as frequently as policy requires.

Note that you may choose to outsource some of these tasks to a third-party provider. Quality training providers understand compliance regulations and the most effective training methods to engage and teach employees what they need to know. Using a third-party training provider is a great way to save time and deliver the most effective compliance programs.

Making Compliance Training More Engaging

Engaging compliance training encourages active participation and helps employees learn and retain more information and skills. The following tips can make your compliance training more engaging:

  • Keep it simple. The most engaging training programs are easily accessible to employees across the organization. Use simple language and examples that are easily understood for maximum effectiveness.
  • Use real-life examples. Employees relate to things they’ve experienced, so try to use real-life examples whenever possible. Employees will engage with these scenarios and find applying the knowledge to their own jobs easier.
  • Include only relevant content. Employees tend to tune out when information doesn’t feel relevant to them. Depending on the size of your organization, you may like to hold several training sessions to make sure employees get the most relevant training. For example, you might hold a separate session for managers that addresses leadership topics. When citing policies or legislation, include only the relevant sections.
  • Give information in bite-sized pieces. Giving too much new information at once can overwhelm employees and prevent them from absorbing knowledge. Employees can also start feeling bored or restless when training sessions drag on. Breaking training programs down into short, easily digestible components can be more engaging.
  • Use a variety of different learning materials. Using a range of learning materials makes your training course more interesting and engaging. It also makes sure you appeal to different kinds of learners. For example, you might include video content, role-playing exercises, and a quiz to test knowledge.
  • Gamify your training. Gamifying your training course can increase motivation and make training more engaging as your employees compete against one another. Awarding points for mastery and displaying these points on a leader board, for example, can make your compliance training more fun and effective.
  • Use digital technology. Modern employees naturally engage with technology. Digital tools, including online quizzes and cloud-based training resources, should resonate with your employees.

The best third-party training providers know how to engage employees at all levels with compliance training. These experienced firms understand how employees learn best and create customized training programs that get results.

Compliance training is essential for companies of all sizes. However, the time that developing and implementing these programs takes can take a toll on small businesses like yours. That’s why so many businesses choose Impactly. We take the hassle out of compliance training by creating programs customized to your company and applying them in your workplace. To learn more about what we do, request a demo via our website. Ensure your employees get the training they need without the stress by partnering with Impactly.


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