You want employees to have a positive impression when they learn about ethics and compliance training. However, many struggle to see how an E&C program makes their day-to-day jobs easier, safer, or better. They may not understand the practical value of E&C training for themselves or for the company. In contrast, the growing number of well-known corporate malfeasance cases making headlines, demonstrate that E&C learning is more important than ever to reduce risk and protect reputations.
Ethics and compliance officers know the value of ethical and compliant behavior. The question is, how can you find new and innovative ways to bring more attention, relevance, and excitement to E&C training?
Emphasizing value plays a vital role in successful E&C training. When employees don’t value their training, it fails to add any benefit to accomplishing their daily job responsibilities.
We need to build on the idea of learning about compliance and ethics training, and how it’s tightly integrated with everyone’s job. Building a flow of continuous learning means embedding training into the daily workflow, where its value becomes immediately apparent.
A campaign-based approach to ethics and compliance training
If you fundamentally agree with that idea, then a campaign-based approach can be a very successful way to deliver an effective learning program. We know it works. SAI360 helps global organizations build ethics and compliance programs to address business risks and protect their brand. We go beyond time-consuming, one-time training courses. Like advertising and marketing, learning is about changing behavior and requires repetition to communicate the value of the ethics and compliance program
Ethics and compliance officers should act more like marketers trying to change someone’s behavior. Do so by breaking the learning experience into four steps:
- Prime (Discovery): This stage is about making employees aware of an ethics and compliance topic like diversity, equity, and inclusion and helping them recognize they have a learning need. It’s the same process as advertising a product.
- Train (Consideration): At this stage, you deliver key knowledge about the ethics and compliance program and engage everyone in why it matters, so each employee develops the right attitude toward the training. In marketing and advertising, it’s called persuasion.
- Apply (Conversion): This is when you help each transfer what they learned to apply the training in their everyday workday. For E&C programs, it’s all about connecting the dots to operationalize the training and instilling the knowledge in employees so they understand their roles and responsibilities. Again, like marketing, the goal is to satisfy customers.
- Sustain (Retention): The last stage isn’t the end of the learning journey. It’s a continual effort to embed a desired outcome and behavior. Like marketing, it’s all about repeat business and serving your customers. For your E&C program, it means helping someone maintain what they have learned and reinforcing why it is essential to them. Learning is about changing behavior.
Gaining valuable, transferable workplace skills
Our deep expertise in the field of ethics and compliance programs tell us there are two driving forces behind the perception of E&C training among the modern workforce: time and value. Today’s workforce feels overwhelmed and distracted when they learn about ethics and compliance training.
It’s time for a reset. Position E&C training as a valuable skill for employees to learn that can help them in their current jobs and in their careers.
LinkedIn’s 2022 Workplace Learning Report surveyed 1,444 Learning and Development professionals and 610 learners, skills—both upskilling and reskilling—are the most critical component of future-proofing organizations and advancing an individual’s career. Employees demand not only flexible on-the-job learning, but they also expect organizations to provide them with more opportunities for personal growth and purpose. E&C training can be a valuable component of on-the-job learning that companies also benefit from.
Organizations now recognize the need to nurture and cultivate human capabilities in the workforce to match employees’ expectations of on-the-job relationship building, social responsibility, and compassionate behavior.
That said, taking a campaign-based approach to your ethics and compliance training program can help employees recognize your program’s value and make it easier for them to engage with that information. Making these experiences more flexible shows employees that you value their time, and by doing that, you might change their perception of ethics and compliance learning.