5 Tips for Creating Engaging Compliance Training

Compliance training is essential for every organization. It is not uncommon for compliance training to be treated as a burden, and this view often leads to ineffective training and failure. Companies become better and more profitable organizations when they view compliance training as an opportunity to equip their employees with the necessary skills to handle complex laws and regulations and perform their jobs more efficiently and safely. Engaging and effective compliance training helps mitigate risks to avoid violations or penalties. Here are five tips to help create engaging compliance training.

Team leader engaging employees in a compliance training class.

Be familiar with your audience

To design and develop effective compliance training, it is important to be familiar with your audience. Information about their educational and professional backgrounds, experience level, and more can aid in creating training that is appropriate for your audience and avoids unnecessary information. Surveys, interviews, and observing employees on the job are ways to gain this information so that you can better determine what design elements and multimedia tools will better increase engagement in your compliance training courses.

Content should be reflective of the organization. Use specific instances in the organization, designations of people, and images of the actual work space and people within the organization. It is also important to investigate what core compliance policies and procedures have already been covered. Use this information to determine what new knowledge employees need to acquire and what needs to be refreshed to ensure that relevant topics are included in your compliance training.

Make it realistic

Content is more likely to be engaging when it’s about real situations employees can easily relate to because they will be able to better contextualize how their compliance training relates to their daily work activities. Often, compliance training uses obvious yet unrealistic scenarios with ridiculously easy questions to convey the point more clearly. This can be viewed as an insult to employees’ intelligence.

Develop scenarios for training that are actually believable. Because compliance is usually about making the right decision in a given situation, create typical situations where there is conflict to resolve or a decision to be made. Case studies, real-world scenarios, and storytelling are techniques that can create real-life connections to compliance training. Case studies and real-world scenarios can help employees develop a connection with issues in a secure environment through scenarios that reflect their work circumstances. Storytelling fosters a greater emotional connection to the subject matter by motivating learners and creating an immersive experience.

Make it fun with games and simulations

Gamification and interactive simulations are two ways of making compliance training more fun. Interactive games and simulations can significantly boost both engagement and retention in learners by drawing out emotions which are an important driver of attention, which drives learning and memory. Games and simulations help provide contextual memory prompts that will help employees recall information in similar real-life events.

Employees engaged in interactive simulation. Tips for compliance training engagement.

Engaging compliance training allows and encourages an emotional connection between employees and their training. Create a game where employees advance to the next level by answering questions about compliance issues. Have them participate in an interactive simulation that offers real world practice. Within the simulation, employees must execute a process or complete a task that is based upon the organization’s rules and regulations. Both methods give employees the chance to make choices that can lead to rewards or consequences without direct impact to their work outside of the game or simulation. The excitement and challenge offered makes the training more meaningful and productive.

Incorporate visuals

Incorporating different types of visuals such as images, infographics, and videos into your compliance training can help accommodate diverse needs and preferences. Keep in mind though that many learners are much better at visual learning, and well-crafted imagery and videos help them retain more information. It also avoids monotony. Staring at pages full of text is unexciting and can lead to employees disengaging or “zoning out” during training.

Because making videos can take a lot of work, consider creating videos about the more important compliance topics and use images and drawings throughout for less critical course material. The videos can feature cartoons, live actors, or slides with images accompanied by an audio narrator. In these videos, create entertaining story lines and relatable characters so that employees can feel immersed into the experience.

Break it up into smaller chunks of information

Breaking an abundance of information down into smaller chunks can help employees process it and easier for the trainer to focus on learning objectives. Bullet points and bite-sized modules help avoid cognitive overload and make information more palatable and retainable. If the compliance training is a refresher course, it’s not necessary to fill the training session with tons of information. Training should be as succinct as possible and diagnostic tools should be used to determine knowledge gaps.

Structure compliance training so that employees train once and test more regularly as needed. If they fail the test, they go through training again or are directed to relevant learning material. Also consider spacing content out over time through internal communication channels to not only reinforce the message but to potentially increase engagement. This gives employees an element of control by allowing them to follow the training in the order or at the time they want within their schedule.

Wrapping It All Up

Compliance training is necessary to organizations, but it doesn’t have to be an extremely boring experience for employees. Understanding your target audience helps create relatable training content that can be challenging yet entertaining through techniques like gamification and videos. Creating fun and engaging compliance training boosts employee interaction and knowledge retention.

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