When employees receive notice that they need to take online compliance training, the negative responses that might ensue are a bit predictable:
- “Training, again? Didn’t we just do training last year?”
- “Wake me up when it’s over.”
- “Yay, I can get paid to play Candy Crush on my phone while I mindlessly click through the training program!”
- “Compliance training? Whatever …”
Unfortunately, these reactions are rooted in some historical truth: Compliance training can be uninteresting for the rank-and-file employee, especially if it’s not executed well. Here are five undeniable reasons why people resist compliance training, along with ways you can make them love it instead.
Reason #1: Compliance training is so boring
We understand the problem: Compliance training doesn’t evoke images of party time. Online training that fails to engage users can seem pointless and lead to employees just clicking through without reading anything appearing on the screen. In-person training isn’t always the solution to this, because the proctor and their presentation can inadvertently be just as dull and unengaging as online training.
Reason to love compliance training: Online training doesn’t have to be mundane—innovative vendors deliver dynamic learning that immerses users in the experience from the start and continually engages them throughout the course. Interactive, absorbing modules also allow employees to experience training at their own pace, thus providing as much time as necessary to learn the concepts being presented. With the help of scenario-based training, workers come away understanding why compliance is important and how it might come into play in their day-to-day experience.
Reason #2: Training cuts into other responsibilities
Employees’ time is valuable, so “wasting” it with training for things they think they already know and might not even apply to their everyday roles creates a negative attitude before the learner even logs into the program.
Reason to love compliance training: Employees need training to ensure they are making the right compliance choices when such a situation arises. With an engaging program, training truly teaches and provides value, even in the middle of a hectic day. Besides offering a nice change of pace amid their other responsibilities, employees may enjoy great training. Furthermore, learners can log in at their convenience—with this flexibility, training won’t be an interruption but rather another important part of their schedule. And with adaptive training, employees who master concepts can be automatically fast-tracked through the course, saving up to 50 percent of the time it might normally take to complete the module.
Reason #3: The training doesn’t seem relevant
This reason is all too valid with some cookie-cutter courses: When little or nothing about the “learning” applies to the individual learner, it will seem like an exercise in futility. If employees in compliance training are asking themselves, “Why does this matter to me?” you’re already at a disadvantage …
Reason to love compliance training: Realistic scenarios simulate situations that employees may encounter in their everyday roles and responsibilities. This immediately captures their attention because the answers they give could someday mirror a decision they make in real life—and getting the answer right now helps them get it right again in the future. Role-based questioning gets the customized experience going by tailoring scenarios to the individual employee. Then, adaptive training truly personalizes the experience by adjusting the learning based on how the user is interacting with the program and answering scenario questions.
Reason #4: It’s the same training, year after year …
Compliance training that barely changes from one session to the next is often immediately dismissed by employees. Organizations that are lax with updating their training are merely checking the box—offering training because they have to, but content to throw the same metaphorical spaghetti at the wall and hope something else sticks.
Reason to love compliance training: Varying and updating training with each session—and engaging training surely can be required more than once a year—offers a fresh experience each time. Adaptive training from a provider that stays current with content based on the latest industry and regulatory developments ensures that no two training sessions are the same but are always impactful. Also, the adaptive approach helps by steering already knowledgeable employees into more advanced concepts, thus ensuring everyone comes away from training sessions having learned something new.
Reason #5: It’s about training, not learning
People meet someone new and forget their names a minute later—how can compliance training concepts stick after the course is completed, given our short attention and comprehension spans?
Reason to love compliance training: Great training builds muscle memory so that employees aren’t forgetting what they learned right away and months later. Also, organizations don’t need to rely solely on training to teach and reinforce compliance—an ecosystem of resources can provide refreshers, introduce new concepts, offer handy reference materials, and supplement previous learning. Microlearning, job aids, and entertaining videos deliver compliance education and best practices to employees all year long.
Employees may be ambivalent about compliance training, but they must not be ambivalent about compliance. Outstanding training can chip away at their negative perceptions while building an organizational culture of compliance in which employees embrace, not dread, training and learning.