You’ve got tens – if not hundreds! – of compliance, policies to keep on top of (and that’s just the ones relating to regulatory compliance before we even begin to consider all the operational policy and procedure documents) and a remit to ensure that your organization’s workforce is up-to-date and operating effectively.
When compliance training is notoriously difficult to have employees engage with, how do you do it?
Well, one quick win would be to integrate your policy management and training management technology. In this post, we’ll look at 5 of the biggest wins a shared solution can provide.
First up, here’s a quick rundown of some of the shared challenges faced by both compliance and training teams which highlight the shared plight and why taking a shared approach to managing administration and reporting in particular is such a good idea…
A problem shared (is a problem halved)
Dealing with limited resources (time, budget or people) is something that both Compliance and Training Managers tackle on a constant basis. Finding ways to achieve their own performance goals and deliver on their organizational objectives with fewer resources than they would like is a high priority for both.
Similarly, both policy and training managers regularly struggle with communication breakdowns. Effective communication is critical to the success of both departments, but miscommunications – or indeed, a general lack of communication – often result in confusion and resistance between managers, employees, and stakeholders alike.
Another area that both policy and training managers find challenging is measuring and evaluating the effectiveness of their programs. Technology is obviously a big help here, but data is often siloed in different systems and it can be difficult to determine whether compliance training programs are delivering the expected outcomes.
This is also the cause of another shared issue between Policy and HR Managers when it comes to training delivery: keeping everyone in the business up to date!
Legislation and regulations are often changing, and it’s hard enough keeping up with these changes and what it means for your organization’s operations, let alone ensuring that the wider workforce is aware of – and attested to – changes in policies and procedures that reflect these updates.
Working together – and using a shared system of record and communication – would clearly help to reduce the effects of these shared challenges, and benefit the business as a whole.
5 reasons to take a shared policy & training management approach
Now that we understand some of the problems faced by both Policy and Training teams, let’s have a look at how using a shared technology solution can help in 5 key areas:
- Streamlining processes
- Improving access to policy information
- Improving engagement with compliance training
- Customizing content
- Simplifying reporting and analysis
Using a shared platform means that cross-over administrative tasks can be automated, streamlining processes, saving time, and reducing (the potential for) human errors.
For example, Policy Managers can track policy development, reviews and approval processes and notify their L&D counterparts when an update may necessitate a change in the related training materials.
Likewise, training managers can utilize learning management features to automate course registrations when new policy and procedure-related content is released – even down to individual teams, job roles, or other groups/cohorts of the workforce.
In a related vein, a shared system allows Policy and Training Managers to provide employees with easy access to policy documents, training materials and other resources – all managed and maintained from a single storage system.
This means no more out-of-date course materials or incorrect policy information being shared as everyone has access to the same documents in a shared online repository – all of which can be managed in real-time.
With the Ekko mobile app, employees and external contractors can access the most up-to-date information – and attest to relevant policies on the go – anytime, any place, anywhere.
Having access to the latest documents and materials doesn’t mean people will actually engage with the resources at their disposal, however, and this is where unified solutions – especially those that are borne out of existing LMS technologies, really come into their own.
Drawing on the shared digital resource library, relevant training materials can be embedded alongside each policy or procedure document – resulting in just-in-time training support and policy attestation.
Likewise, in-built communication and engagement tools facilitate further peer-to-peer learning and discussion.
Intuitive use of location-based technology and QR codes also means deskless workers and those working out in the field can get push notifications to attest policies or complete bite-size Health & Safety training when they arrive at new locations, for example.
We touched on it above, in terms of improved access and engagement, but the same can also be said for content customization – or at least making it easier for employees to access Compliance policies, courses and other resources that are actually relevant to them.
It’s not unusual for there to be more than one policy or procedure document or training course that covers the same topic within an organization – especially large, international enterprises. And the challenge here can be in ensuring that people in the right locations get the updates they need, when they need them, without misinforming those in other locations where a change in legislation or internal policy may not apply.
Again, by leaning on learning management system functionality, you can ensure that only affected employees get notified about changes relating to their unique role, location, seniority, (or pretty much any other variable for that matter).
This not only saves on admin time, but also means employees are more likely to engage with their organization’s compliance updates if they know that they only get asked to do/read/attest to things that are directly related to them as an individual.
We’re leaving this one until last, but it is perhaps one of the most important: bringing together compliance policy and training reporting into one platform makes analysis and reporting so much simpler – not to mention faster!
Need to know how many of your team need to renew their Health & Safety certification this month? Or maybe how many are yet to attest to a new Working from Home policy?
A unified system allows you to bring this data together to give a full 360-degree view of individual compliance – and how this is impacting their overall performance.
Plus, you have a defensible audit trail of what training has been provided and completed by each individual, alongside all the policy and procedure document attestation should something happen which means you need to provide evidence to support an insurance claim or compliance breach.
Why aren’t more organizations taking the shared platform approach?
So, plenty of reasons to move to a shared platform approach, but why aren’t more organizations taking this approach?
The 2 main reasons are: existing/legacy technology and budgets.
Let’s face it, most organizations – especially at the enterprise level – will already have one or both of a policy management and learning management system in place.
But because Compliance and Training often sit in different areas of the business, they’re usually working with different budgets (and often with a different, sometimes competing, set of responsibilities. ), and the existing technology solution is at a different point in its lifecycle.
So it’s rare that the two departments – even if the tech they use is overseen by an IT function – would look at whether a shared solution was a possibility, instead resorting to a default of researching for a potential replacement point solution instead.
HR are responsible for far more than training delivery, just as Compliance are responsible for other things in the business.
Making the switch to a shared Compliance platform
Resistance to change is always going to be a big blocker, especially at the enterprise level where implementing (and integrating) a new system can be disruptive at the best of times.
But this is where making small changes can have the biggest difference in the long run. And as organizations place ever-more focus on GRC and ESG, getting the right tech in place to support your programs becomes key.
So, next time you come to renewing/reviewing your existing compliance tech, maybe it’s time you looked at whether there was a best-of-both-worlds solution that could improve not just operational efficiencies and ROI, but help increase your business resilience too.
Want to find out more about what the Ekko integrated policy and training management platform could do for your organization? Book a demo and speak with one of our platform experts.