Why do learners think “Oh no” when they first hear of compliance learning?

Why do learners think “Oh no” when they first hear of compliance learning?

Is it the aesthetic design? Is the purpose not clear? Are they scarred by previous experiences?

Learning that sits in the compliance space is typically led by a regulatory, legislative, or legal need. Exciting wording, I think you’ll agree… but in essence and practice, it means the need has already been identified. What usually hasn’t been identified, is the whole opportunity or benefit that compliance learning presents an organisation.

If you think to some of the problems modern L&D experience within their respective organisations, the battle for learner attention probably stands out the most. L&D are competing with so much noise within a company that it makes the potential benefit hard to surface for learners – It is becoming harder and harder to capture a learner’s attention. And although learning in the flow of work is steadily maturing as a concept within our industry, it is not yet fully evolved.

Compliance learning does not have this issue, or certainly not this scale of issue – It’s something everyone is required to do. That gives compliance learning an unparalleled opportunity within all this noise. Now we need to be very careful with this type of ‘power’. As Peter Parker’s Uncle once said, “With great power comes great responsibility”. Get it right and the potential is massive. Get it wrong and repercussions will be felt for years.

I asked a question on LinkedIn not so long ago about why compliance learning isn’t quite seen as part of the L&D family. Some of the responses were fascinating and ranged from the traditional design used to the lack of integration with the wider learning landscape.

So, we sought to go back to the basics, but do them well. A clear purpose, simple to consume design, that complimented how they work in a fast paced and evolving business.

We evaluated the need for the learning from scratch – Ignoring the compliance requirement entirely. This helped us unearth its links and impact on colleague values and behaviours, which are measurable at Sage as part of the appraisal process.

We inspired colleagues into engaging with the learning using emotive storytelling and juxtaposing real life examples to help learners see both the positive and negative impacts actions can have.

We designed and implemented the learning in a way that was less intrusive on learners’ time given we understood how Sage colleagues spent their time, empowering them through completion timescales and formats of their own choosing.

And for good measure we introduced innovation into the format, as we looked to demonstrate how effectively we created an emotional connection between the learner and the content. We did this through our use of sentiment analytics and natural language processing; as a technology it is fairly new, as a use in L&D it is incredibly new! All achieved by using often overlooked SCORM functionality – who would have thought?!

An insight into our journey. Please join me on Thursday, 10th June at 12:00 BST UK to find out more – no question you bring is out of bounds. The objective for us is to share what we did so that the Learning and Development community can grow stronger together, and the eLearning network plays a pivotal role in helping to connect us all.

About the author

I’ve worked in learning and development for over 15 years. Leading teams and contributing to innovation in learning has seen me spend most of my time and focus to date in the digital space. My ethos is to challenge the status quo for how things are done, and that is the mindset I brought to Sage to transform their global compliance learning programme. At Sage, we transform the way people think and work, enabling their organisations to thrive. Every day, all around the world, our 13,000 colleagues and local networks of accountants and partners support and enable business builder success.

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