4 real reasons why employees don’t connect with compliance online training
Instructional Design

4 real reasons why employees don’t connect with compliance online training

Compliance training is a drag; or, at least, that’s what a lot of people think, because they can’t see its relevance. But how does that happen, and how can you fix it? In this article, you’ll find out the 4 real obstacles that prevent your employees from connecting with compliance online training courses.

Why your employees don’t connect with compliance online training

Online training is an efficient way to pass skills to your workforce. It’s convenient, because your staff can work on their own time. Ideally, because it’s mandatory for every industry, you want to set aside some time for it. And, definitely, the right compliance training software can get you a long way. But is that all there is?

Make your compliance training part of the workday. Doing it online helps, because you can just carve out a few hours. It’s a more efficient option than blocking off a whole workday or three. And it’s more cost-effective than running an off-site compliance seminar. That said, not everyone can connect with compliance online training courses, and here are 4 of the real reasons why.

1. No context

The main reason your employees feel removed from compliance training is a lack of reference. They see it as something they need to check off their list. They rarely recognize the role it plays in their job, their products, or their customers’ lives. This is often because the subject matter is laid out in remote, abstract, philosophical terms.

What to do

Instead of quoting and spelling out technical jargon, use conversational language and practical examples your employees can relate to in their everyday work. You can still list the relevant laws and articles, but translate the legal terms. Don’t just ask staff to cram – give realistic scenarios, too. Show them what non-compliance looks like on the ground.

Case studies are great, but be open and honest as you share them. Demonstrate the human side of the damage. Don’t exaggerate, or they’ll think you’re just crying wolf. And, beyond telling them what happens if they don’t comply, arm them with tools to stay in line. These aids should be feasible, not just the textbook version of things.

2. #TMI

In social settings, Too Much Information (TMI) applies to the context of oversharing, or airing dirty laundry. In an online training setting, it refers more to data overload.

When you give your corporate learners excess content, they’ll feel overwhelmed. They can’t commit it all to memory, and they won’t know what to discard and what to keep. This can make them anxious, as they try to cram everything. Worse, they could dismiss it all as bureaucratic fluff and lose interest completely.

What to do

Filter content for your employees, teaching them only what they need. Keep your online training material short and to the point. Your legal department would probably prefer that everyone cite their carefully written policies word for word. However, if you put in too much content, it will go in one ear and out the other. The more specific and comprehensible they are to people, the smaller the likelihood of legal loopholes. This is especially important for compliance matters.

3. Heavy workload and stress

It may not be a matter of how the compliance program is designed. You might even have a variety of real-world examples, anecdotes, and simulations that drive the point home. However, other factors are at play. Namely, heavy workloads and stress that distract employees and prevent them from connecting with the content.

What to do

To cure this illness, consider a gamification strategy that gives them added motivation and improves learner engagement. Earning a badge can help them break down the emotional walls that are holding them or forget about all the tasks they need to complete for the time being. Friendly competition for a place on the leaderboard can also be fun and engaging. This way, they’re able to connect with the compliance training course on a personal level and get the most out of the online training experience.

4. Boredom (the struggle is real)

You may think that boredom is an obstacle that employees just need to ‘get over.’ However, the minute boredom sets in, their minds shut off. They not only have short attention spans, but also tech-centered expectations for compliance training. After all, we’re living in the digital era.

What to do

Break the monotony and get them fully engaged by adding serious games, immersive simulations, and interactive multimedia to your eLearning course design. Remember, you’re working against the perception of compliance training. They usually plan it being yawn-inducing. Catch them by surprise and add some entertainment value so that they can emotionally connect to the online training content.


Compliance online training is something corporate learners frequently trudge through. They don’t give it much credence, and they barely remember it once they finish. Your staff doesn’t just want to list the rules. They need authentic examples and applicable compliance tools. Enable them to toe the line, and show them why they should.

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