Not much has changed in the world of compliance training even after the shift to remote working. At the same time, HR pundits agree that in certain areas, the importance has increased because the onus of responsibility on the remote employee is much higher than before.
Usually, when dealing with compliance training, no learning takes place, because it is considered as just another task, which the employees have to check off their list. However, in the area of IT, the emphasis on compliance training has increased due to its importance in the new way of work. Organisations need to drive home its importance for their employees.
With the shift to remote work, one obvious consequence has been the heightened significance of information security and data privacy. While it was important earlier as well, the frequency with which reminders and trainings communicate this to the employees, along with emphasis on the same, has increased.
“We have increased compliance module training more than before. There is a a need to keep pressing on why such training is much more important now.”
In addition, the duty of the managers in trying to explain the ‘why’ of the training, including the consequences of avoiding the rules, has doubled.
Suchismita Burman, CHRO, ITC Infotech, says, “There is a much greater need to create awareness regarding data privacy and information security among the people so that they are extra careful and do not regard it as just another tick-in-the-box training.”
Lakshmanan MT, CHRO, L&T Technology Services, agrees that there is a need to keep pressing on why such training is much more important now. “We have increased compliance module training more than before,” he adds.
However, for too long a time, compliance training has been viewed as just another task to be completed by employees everywhere. Therefore, they may not start regarding it with more importance all of a sudden. They have been used to doing things a certain way, and therefore, while they may complete the course, the importance of the matter may not really seep through. Similarly, for managers and executives as well, this was just another part of the job.
However, working remotely requires one to communicate constantly and follow directions to the T, so that work continues seamlessly. This includes compliance measures, as even one action otherwise can weigh heavily on the employee. For instance, a simple act of forwarding an important file to one’s personal e-mail ID or opening an account on one’s phone can weaken data-security measures.
That is where the responsibility of the organisation comes in, to play a more advisory and consultative role in helping the employee understand the consequences of each action taken. Even the simple task of filling up the timesheets becomes all the more important. With remote working, there is no colleague or manager looking over one’s shoulder to push them to complete compliance-related tasks.
“Understanding the ‘why’ of the matter is most essential, and ensuring employees understand it, is not an easy task,” points out Burman.
“There is a much greater need to create awareness regarding data privacy and information security among the people so that they are extra careful and do not regard it as just another tick-in-the-box training.”
The role of the remote manager has also increased in these past few months, to include a new set of skills — including governing and managing with empathy and compassion; and ensuring that employees understand the importance of compliance.
Short, crisp, bite-sized information continues to work best in this matter, as it has in the past.
There is a greater need for employees to understand the ‘whys’ of IT compliance and the responsibility falls on the organisation to ensure that the message is conveyed accordingly.