Ten eLearning leaders were talking about compelling compliance training … No, that’s not the opening line of a feeble joke; it’s the premise of a recent eLearning Guild white paper, Creating Compliance Training Learners Will Love. The experts shared examples of successful compliance training, as well as advice that can enliven any eLearning. A few consistent themes emerged. These are shared below, offering actionable ways to enhance your compliance training.

  1. Lay off the bling: Creating graphics-heavy eLearning courses can sap resources. Small teams especially will do better to focus on holding learners’ interest with a great story or realistic scenario than putting time, money, and effort into highly designed compliance training that learners just click through as quickly as they can.
  2. Respect learners’ time: Create compliance training that acknowledges how busy learners are and accommodates their existing knowledge. Don’t layer on the interactive activities, game elements, or intricate graphics unless they directly relate to the learning goals. Instead, focus on providing learners exactly what they need—without forcing them to review information they already know.
  3. Give learners a reason to care: A common error in compliance training is focusing too much on the legal reasons it is required—rather than on the reasons learners might actually care about learning the material. Safety training is germane to anyone who’s had or witnessed an accident; creative storytelling—using real incidents—can make it equally meaningful to other learners. Anti-discrimination training might be required of all managers, but it’s also highly relevant to all employees who want to work in a fair and respectful environment.
  4. Tell engaging stories: Much compliance training aims to prevent problems—injuries and accidents, breaking the law, damage to property, embarrassing the company. These potential events, as well as actual incidents, lend themselves to great storytelling. Whether the story is packaged in a cutting-edge immersive environment created in the latest game engine or told by a couple of company employees in a narrative podcast, a great story can capture learners’ attention and have them eagerly awaiting the next installment. Yes, of their required compliance training.
  5. Keep your eyes on the goal: Is it essential that learners memorize an encyclopedia’s worth of arcane details? Or do they simply need to be able to put their hands on it when it’s needed? It’s rarely necessary (or realistic) to expect learners to commit the a multi-volume contract language guidebook to memory, or be able to reel off the location of emergency equipment in every lab and ward of a large urban hospital. Therefore, your compliance training shouldn’t force them to cram that information into their memories, knowing it will reside there exactly long enough to click through the multiple-choice quiz at the end of the training—and not a second longer. Instead, focus learning objectives on what learners actually need to know and do, and devise compliance training that teaches them where to find the information they need, instantly.
  6. Don’t make it easy to click through: In addition to creating training that is relevant and engaging, think about how your design enables or discourages cursory click-throughs. And no, forcing learners to watch videos before they can complete the training is not the answer. Instead, draw them into scenarios where they have to weigh multiple options and determine which is the most appropriate choice of action—and explain why. Investigate alternatives to click-through eLearning in Beyond the Next Button, a free eBook from The eLearning Guild.
  7. Keep training in the workflow: Taking people off the sales or manufacturing floor or out of their workflow to “do training” can reduce its effectiveness. Whenever possible, integrate training with the performance of tasks so the application of the material becomes part of learners’ workday routines. When this is not feasible—safety or harassment-prevention training come to mind—emphasize realistic scenarios and offer learners the chance to make choices and experience the ramifications of those choices.

Advice from eLearning leaders

Curious about what those 10 eLearning leaders had to say about creating great compliance training? Download Creating Compliance Training Learners Will Love today; this free white paper offers great advice and examples in the experts' own words.