Imagine a world in which every American is a subject matter expert in the price and process of purchasing medical services. In this ideal healthcare system, each person actively shops around for medic...
Every business is unique. Your organization may employ ten people or a thousand. Across all industries and in all work environments, there are a handful of essential training courses that business leaders across the board should consider offering their employees:
- Workplace Violence Prevention and Active Shooter Training
- Cybersecurity Training
- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Training
- Sexual Harassment Training
These courses not only deliver valuable information to your employees—they are also an essential risk mitigation tool that can help your company protect your employees, steer clear of employment-related compliance issues, and avoid costly lawsuits.
According to LawInProgress, “Employee training helps reduce the risk of an employment-related lawsuit against a company, and also helps protect your company against damages in the event of a lawsuit. Your failure as an employer to properly and regularly train your employees can increase damages awards against you. Employers who provide consistent and regular training to all levels of employees may be able to convince the court that they acted in good faith to comply with the law.”
In this blog post, we’ll discuss the four essential training courses that all employers should consider offering to protect their business, employees, and help mitigate risk for their company.
Workplace Violence Prevention and Active Shooter Training
Unfortunately, the threat of encountering violence or active shooting in the workplace is very real in America, and it is best that your employees are prepared for and know how to conduct themselves in the event of an emergency. Many businesses now conduct active shooter drills, in addition to fire safety drills.
According to eSafety, “The courts and OSHA alike hold employers responsible for preventing workplace violence under the General Duty Clause, which states that employers must maintain a workplace free from recognized hazards causing—or likely to cause—death or serious physical harm to workers. To be proactive and implement a safety training program that helps prepare your employees for an active shooter incident, it’s best to start by understanding OSHA’s general guidelines for a workplace violence incident.” The guidelines can be found here.
Cybersecurity training is critical to building a workforce that is properly equipped and prepared to do its part to prevent cyberattacks. A few things you can do to get your employees up to speed on cybersecurity include:
- Establishing policies on what—if any—type of software an employee may download to their computer
- Setting complex character password requirements
- Conduct training that explains the different types of cyberattacks and how to identify them
- Set expectations for your employees and empower them to report suspicious links and emails to your IT department
The most important part of training your employees is to communicate the importance and the value of protecting customer and colleague information and their role in keeping these things safe.
Related Reading: 3 Cybersecurity Tips You Must Share With Your Employees
Diversity and Inclusion (DEI) Training
Having a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace is not only the right thing to do—it’s essential to business success. According to a report by Deloitte, employees were 83% more innovative, 31% more focused on customer service, and 42% more collaborative with their team when they felt that their company supported diversity and inclusion.
DEI training for your employees is also helpful when it comes to preventing workplace discrimination, which is prohibited by the Civil Rights Act. Discrimination cases are all too common in the workforce; avoiding discrimination lawsuits is simple; educate yourself on the law. Always make sure business protocols and procedures are followed—and when they aren’t, be sure to document it.
With the critical labor shortage that’s currently happening in America, many industries are finding that they need to step up their efforts at diversifying their workforce in order to attract top talent.
For more information about developing an effective DEI training course for your employees, check out our four-part blog series, Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace.
Sexual Harassment Training
A startling one in three women reports having experienced sexual harassment in the workplace. The #metoo movement has highlighted the need for companies to improve their sexual harassment policies, communication, and training efforts.
If your company already has a harassment policy, then you’re somewhat ahead of the game. But, if you’re one of the 10% of companies that doesn’t have an official sexual harassment policy, you may want to begin working with your HR Specialist or consider retaining one to help you navigate, draft, and implement a customized policy for your workplace. Here are a few things you may want to be mindful of when establishing your sexual harassment policy, as well as a few training recommendations you may want to consider.
Things to consider for your sexual harassment policy:
- Make sure your policy includes all the necessary provisions, such as an anti-retaliation or anti-backlash policy statement
- Communicate your new harassment policy to all personnel and begin conducting training
- Make sure your policy has a formal complaint process that all employees understand so they feel comfortable reporting incidents
When developing your company’s sexual harassment training, you’ll want to create a learning experience that engages all employees. It’s important to remember that live training can be expensive and often require a subject matter or employment law expert to lead. eLearning platforms give businesses and their employees the ability to easily access training courses online. These platforms also enable employers to keep comprehensive records of who has completed each learning path.
Achieving Education and Engagement with eLearning Technology
Over the years, the landscape of learning has dramatically evolved, and technology has given employees the ability to learn anytime, anywhere from a computer or a mobile device. eLearning programs have allowed businesses to create meaningful, real-world learning processes for all types of learners to engage with digitally, which is particularly important in today’s post-pandemic environment.
Having a system in place to bring these resources to employees and track their progress for compliance or regulatory purposes is critical. These systems can be custom-tailored to your business and needs, while also being hyper focused on the employee's development, which will help them be more engaged in the learning process.
Related Reading: Creative Training Solutions to Coronavirus Disruptions
Developing and maintaining a culture of safety and equality in the workplace through effective and engaging education, training, and development programs can help keep your employees safe and help your company mitigate risk. By providing the tools and information that employees need to perform their jobs more safely and treat all coworkers equitably, your employees will become more engaged in and committed to maintaining a safe workplace environment.
Mandy Smith is Vice President of Training and Employee Development and is responsible for providing SWBC employees with learning and development opportunities which enable them to be more effi cient, eff ective, and engaged. In 2016, she was named a Learning! Champion High Performer by Enterprise Learning! Mandy is a member of the American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) and is active in the local chapter. She currently sits on the Chief Learning Officers Business Intelligence Board.