Teaching compliance: how to create content that excites and informs

For many employees, compliance training isn’t one of the most eagerly anticipated days on the corporate calendar. It is, however, one of the most important, as firms rely on their staff to follow policies and procedures to make sure nothing goes awry.

Businesses need to communicate this vital information effectively to make sure it is actually taken on-board, but just how can you make a generally dry topic appealing? Our helpful tips will give you the skills to bring compliance training to life.

Do your background research

Having a clear idea of your audience (the staff) will give you a crucial head start when it comes to compliance. Put together a “common” employee profile and perhaps ask your teams to fill out a survey on their interests. By doing this you can tailor the compliance programme accordingly so that it appeals directly to the audience.

Less work, more play

Everybody enjoys playing games, so if you can incorporate games into your compliance content strategy you will inform and entertain at the same time. One of the easiest ways to do this is by creating a game where employees can only advance to the next level by answering questions correctly. Another option is to simulate a work duty or procedure focused on the rules and regulations you need to teach. This will provide them with real-world experience and challenges but without the risk, and in a more enjoyable, hands-on way.

Vary your content types

Another straightforward way of making compliance more fun is to use videos and images that help bring the subject to life more than page after page of text can. Create characters that your staff can associate with and use them to tell a story that both entertains and educates. This is a far more effective way to help make vital information stick in the mind.

Break it up

Often one of the biggest stumbling blocks to a successful compliance educational campaign is the sheer volume of information that employees have to absorb. As copywriters we always aim to make things as succinct as possible, which makes it much easier to digest. You should aim to create manageable sized modules that can be dealt with in less than half an hour. Careful content planning can also strike a balance between being concise and having enough detail in the copy. This will encourage people to complete the training whenever they have a bit of down time, whether that’s during their lunch break or on the train during their commute.

What advice do you have for making compliance fun? Let us know by leaving a comment below or tweeting us @strattoncraig

  1. Sheila : 3rd September 2015 at 4:30 pm

    Good article—particularly on researching your audience and providing relevant stories and examples!

    I provide Respectful Workplace Training (formerly Sexual and Other Harassment Prevention) for multiple government audiences. Flipping what are potential harassment issues to what is crucial in workplace of respect for diverse perspectives and values is often eye opening for partiipants! I often incorporate individual work styles using an instrument like Everything DiSC–simple and fun.

    Always start with an "expectations' exercise" to showcase what people already know about harrassment in the workplace and what questions they may have. Rarely will I get questions but I always hear, "…already know this stuff" so I leverage those comments when presenting cases that have been decided by the courts recently that may surprise many, (i.e. retaliation). The intrigue begins…

    Also use loads of stories, examples and media (PPT) depicting timely, real, relevant characters matching my audience of firefighters, police officers, public works water plan operators, park maintenance workers, city council members, etc. Vital to capturing different learning styles and applying immediately to current workplace frustrations.


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