Global Compliance Trends: Defining New Standards of Training

Award winning compliance training programs look beyond tick the box requirements. The industry is laden with examples of “what not to do”, where learning solutions have fallen short, and business owners have felt the squeeze for mismanaging the needs of their employees. Failing to engage individuals through the kind of content that motivates them to critically understand, “why is compliance important to the overall business objective?”.

Designing meaningful action, the kind that engages learners and in return provides measurable ROI, can’t be bought. That’s because there is no “one size fits all” approach. It’s easy to teach lots of people the same thing when personal circumstance is disregarded, and we assume everyone can simply “get by” with the same boiler plate training allocation. The real task instead lies in specializing learning pathways, and providing individuals with bespoke training that best fits their needs and the context of their function within the organization.

Let’s consider how we might go about structuring an initiative like this, and how the industry is evolving to promote the kind of progress this standard represents.

Technology is an often untapped tool in the education of health care practitioners

Incorporating Adaptive Learning 

The DOJ clearly outlines a number of minimum requirements to be fulfilled by compliance specific training programmes. These tend to the needs of how training solutions are built at a passing grade level considering them in terms of:

  1. How well they are designed
  2. How effectively they are maintained
  3. If they fulfil their purpose in a more fundamental sense.

Beyond this, companies have the flexibility to act in their own creative interest, and perhaps push the needle towards building new, innovative engagement models that define the industry standard moving forward.

Training needs to be adaptable and dynamic. Scenario based learning that offers organic course progression can provide learners with a unique, personalized experience which engages their understanding of the subject as their choices within the course dictate the content pathways they go down. This kind of training offers a far more comprehensive and pragmatic alternative to the repetitive MCQ templates traditionally relied upon within the space.

Covid has forced HCPs to think differently about their education strategies

Rethinking Engagement Model Standards

When courses are too standardized, learning outcomes tend to become homogenous between departments and roles. Without specification, learners are pushed down the same track, pigeonholing their experience, often overloading them with unnecessary information that has no application within their function of the business. Once we can account for how to correctly target the right people with the appropriate content, we can then think in terms of the most engaging means for doing so.  

Effective content delivery can take many forms. But prioritizing information retention doesn’t mean subjecting learners to copious amounts of details and extraneous training commitments. The overall goal of the organization should be to reduce training time, while increasing workflows and the quality of learning individuals take away from their experience.  A blended approach that incorporates multiple forms of content engagement through video, text, interactive/gamified, scenario-based learning offers a more representative experience. Especially when we account for the strength differences among individuals.  

It’s down to casting as wide a net as possible and accommodating for unique learning styles through multiple avenues of content engagement. Promoting behavioral change requires looking beyond traditional training methods and standard approaches, engaging individuals through a look and feel that helps compliance training to meaningfully resonate in the form of real-life application.  

Digital thereapeutics are a key learning area for HCPs

Reporting Standards 

Besides companies being accountable for the data management standards enforced by the DOJ, the intelligence that compliance training statistics have to offer future process development is invaluable. It’s a kind of limitless resource, providing you with flexible insights, all dependent on the questions you ask, and the importance you place on understanding the depth of what the numbers have to say. Harnessing your data output is particularly essential in terms of program evolution. Knowing where learners are engaging, disengaging, how they’re performing and if any gaps exist between those things can only help to meaningfully guide course corrections going forward. 

Shift to 3rd Party Vendor Training 

As the technology has grown, so too has the scope of the business function and the context of new relationships covered within it. Traditionally, organizations actively avoided training third party vendors to limit accountability, and the exposure of assuming liability for any mistakes made by workers external to themselves. As management processes have improved however, the ability of organizations to provide high quality training alternatives has similarly followed course. Third Party Risk Management (TPRM) has become well incorporated within the broader Ethics, Risk and Compliance (ERC) function of most pharmaceutical organizations. This is accountable to a number of changes within the industry such as the growing cost of compliance breaches, stricter regulative infrastructure and the information explosion fuelled by more adaptive, powerful data technology 


The scale of operating a global pharmaceutical company is a feat worth beholding in and of itself. Organizations must juggle growing supply chain complexities, stringent regulation design and the new challenge of managing a largely remote workforce. All of which contribute to a significant amount of dormant risk. In order to keep that risk idle, organizations must adapt to the times by investing in high quality training standards. Such that they empower their workforce with the most up to date, engaging course material specific to them. Again, every case is different, while there is no one size fits all solution that will ask any less of executives hoping to coast through the development process. Fortunately, the industry is constantly innovating, and the quality of training solutions to come to market are only ever improving. Now more than ever, organizations have real control over the risk they expose themselves to. In the form of instilling compliance within their cultural frameworks, and the preventative measures they take towards training their networks to the best of their ability. 

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