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How to Build Effective Code of Conduct eLearning - 5 Tips

Code of conduct is boring and nobody pays attention to the training. Well, that's what we've been told. Don't let that be the perception of your employees, especially as it's a big reflection on your organisation's culture. If you're in charge of the code of conduct for your organisation, it's time to inspire your employees and create a solution that actually changes behaviour and improves results around code of conduct breaches.

It's a common trend for organisations to transform their code of conduct training into eLearning because it has many benefits. It's cost effective, efficient, helps with consistent messaging and is reportable. We’ve got a few tips that can help you develop a more effective solution rather than the common approach, which is more of an information dump that people never remember. It's time to reduce breaches of your code of conduct.

Instead, we want to help your employees understand what the code of conduct means to them in their role and make it relatable. There will be people out there that are going to break the code of conduct and that’s beyond what we can control but let’s do our best within our control.

Tips to make effective code of conduct eLearning training:

1. Make it relevant to your organisation.
It's easy to want to cram every single piece of information (legislation and policies) available into your training. Naturally you want to protect your organisation if there is a breach of the code of conduct. This is a reactive approach. In reality, your HR team will be able to share some metrics on common breaches that should form the focus of your training. Once identified, aim to reduce them because it can be more beneficial to your organisation if you reduce the most common breaches.

Ask questions such as, "Why is X our most frequent breach of the code?" and "How much is X costing us each time it occurs?” This allows you to create training that is relevant to your environment and will help you improve specific problems that you face (see tip 2). As a result, resources can be put to better use by reducing the time and money spent on breaches of the code.

2. Find out what specific issues you are facing.
When you identify what's relevant to you, get specific on those issues. Ask, "Why does it occur?” and investigate it from four separate lenses:
1. The knowledge they hold
2. The skills they possess
3. The environment they operate in such as cultural norms
4. Their motivation as a learner and employee. 

Keep asking "Why?" until you get to the bottom of it. Then you will have a deep understanding of the issues and you can create activities for your training that challenge the learner and focus on the areas that are causing continuous breaches of the code. This will help you solve real problems faced by your organisation.

3. Speak to your employees.
Your employees (also your learners) are expected to act in accordance with your code of conduct. It's important to understand their perspective as to why people continuously breach the code. For example, their insight might share that the policy says one thing but their supervisor expects another type of behaviour that does not align. Talking to your employees will help you gain an understanding of what is actually happening and if the training content is actually going to solve the problem that exists.

4. Make information available.
In our experience, we find that organisations just need to show that they have given the employee access to the code of conduct information. Therefore, your training solution should focus on the key actions and behaviours that you are trying to improve. All the other stuff can be included by linking to intranet pages, websites, policy documents and things like that for further reading and to show that you have made that information available to the employee. 

If you attempt to include every single piece of information relevant to code of conduct it is likely that your user will become confused and overwhelmed with the amount of information that is being dumped on them. This is a common eLearning complaint and one that you can avoid by focusing on the parts of the code of conduct that are most relevant to your organisation (Gutierrez, 2014).

5. Motivate employees to complete the code of conduct training.
We encourage you to find out the benefits of actually complying and why the learner should actually care in the first place, this includes the consequences. For example, breaching the code could result in them losing their job, which will impact their family and lifestyle. Identify what your employees are motivated by and use it to help them better retain the information. You can find out the benefits and motivators by talking to your employees and your team that handles employee relations. Use what you find in the language of your eLearning solution.

This is not an exhaustive list but we believe that if you implement some of these tips, you’ll be in a better position to inspire learning and change behaviour that has positive results for your organisation.

If you're still with us here, thanks for reading. We really hope it has inspired you and added value to your craft. Please share this with anyone you believe it could add value to so that you can help us on our mission to improve eLearning training solutions globally!

If you'd like us to help you solve a problem that you are working on, you can ask us your question at and we’ll be happy to share some insights.

Thanks for the reference:
Gutierrez, K. (2014). Shiftelearningcom. Retrieved 22 January, 2017, from

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