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Infographic For business

The true cost of rule breakers in workplace compliance

CYPHER Learning conducted a study on workplace compliance, revealing that businesses face an average annual cost of $1.6M per year due to non-compliance. The main causes are employees' lack of awareness or understanding of rules - yet educating staff remains a comparative afterthought.

The survey of 400 HR and business leaders across the US and UK found that nearly nine in ten (88%) of respondents agree that greater employee accountability would mitigate business risks. However, 71% believe staff don’t ‘get’ the importance of policies and procedures, so engagement is an ongoing battle – with 68% saying getting workers to comply with policies is a major headache.

More study insights

Unknown risks
Almost three-quarters (71%) of respondents think staff are likely breaking rules, but often don’t know until something goes wrong – with policies relating to HR, data sharing, and health and safety being the areas people believe employees are most likely to cut corners.

Lack of time and resources
98% of respondents believe employees would be more likely to understand and comply with policies and procedures if training was more engaging. However, 87% said barriers such as a lack of time, funding, and urgency prevent them from making training more engaging.

A growing problem
In the past three years, organizations have created or updated policies and procedures to cover topics such cybersecurity, social media, hybrid working, sustainability, data bias and AI. But 74% of respondents said although they should be regularly updating policies and procedures, realistically they don’t have the time.

Lack of investment and focus
To make training around policies and procedures more engaging. Less than half (44%) of budgets assigned to policies and procedures is spent on employee education – equating to just $105,000 per year on average.

Compliance training is boring
Meanwhile, 66% of respondents admitted employee education is often an afterthought, with 62% complaining that training in this area is “one of the most boring things” they have to do.

Limited communication methods
Email updates and company newsletters (47%) are the most common ways employees learn about policies and procedures.

Lack of online training adoption
Less than half (45%) of companies conduct online training. Fewer still (31%) create explainer videos or interactive, gamified training experiences (26%) to drive the message home.

'One and done' mentality
Only 56% of companies continually educate employees on policies, with 65% admitting to treating training as a ‘one-and-done information dump’ during the onboarding process.

Lack of assessment
Less than half the companies surveyed (44%) test employees’ knowledge to ensure they have fully understood a procedure, or educate them on the purpose of each policy to aid understanding (45%).

No personalized training
Even fewer (37%) tailor guidance to individual competencies and job roles to ensure relevancy.

Read the full CYPHER Learning report - The True Cost of Rule Breakers in Workplace Compliance. 

Download the infographic


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