Onboarding is the term commonly used to describe the internal process or mechanism by which an organisation provides new employees with knowledge, information and expected behaviour to become an effective member of the organisation. The process should set out clear expectations. The onboarding process applies to any organisation and any type of role. The aim of onboarding is to provide and establish an understanding of standards and policies quickly and efficiently so that a new team member can hit the ground running. However in reality onboarding takes on many forms and can range from almost nothing to days of extensive form filling and induction videos. More often than not it remains a box ticking exercise.

Compliance is the term commonly used to describe a person and organisation confirming to current laws, regulations, standards and other requirements, both internal (policy) and external (regulatory).

The onboarding process follows the recruitment stage and is a critical point where an organisation can and should clearly define an effective compliance culture from the outset. This matters because new employees can quickly become established and valued members of the team. Driving home the importance of compliance from day one can and will therefore establish a culture of compliance over time.

Compliance really does matter from day one. According to the UK Health and Safety Executive (HSE), employees are as likely to have an accident in the first six months of a job as they are during the whole of the rest of their working lives. Take a moment to think about that.

With this in mind let’s consider how this can be achieved. All too often an organisation will provide a bunch of documents for a new employee to read and digest amongst a plethora of form filling. This passes by in a haze so that by the time the new team member gets to start their job most of the documents provided go to the back of their drawer never to be seen again. With digital read & comply the same new employee is provide with a specific reading list not only which they must complete training for, but importantly to which they must agree and sign before signing to say they agree to comply. It is the very act of signing that assists in driving home the importance of compliance.

Because an onboarding read and comply list may contain the same documents or documents that are drip fed to the read list in a specific order then the quality and consistency of the onboarding process can be maintained and monitored for its effectiveness. Similarly one can define read and comply lists for different audiences, roles and and skillsets.

Furthermore, these onboarding documents should be retained in the new employee reading list and updated regularly so that as the person transitions to becoming a fully fledged team member, so they continue to be asked to comply with each new version. In other words, they began by accepting the compliance signing process from day one and shall continue to do so throughout their career within the organisation. This establishes compliant behaviour and drives home a compliance ethos and culture. It becomes part of their working life. That is very far away indeed from old documents in a dusty drawer.

As importantly, because read and comply outputs its results for use in appraisals and auditing then a first and subsequent appraisal may include the confirmation of the proactive nature of compliance. Alternatively the failure to comply with updates can also be raised to drive home its importance. Without read and comply an organisation generally has no idea of who has read what and when. Not is there any channel of feedback regarding comprehension of compliance policies and standards.

In many sectors such as banking, finance and insurance compliance is mandatory and can lead to huge punitive fines and loss of reputation when compliance is ignored. Anything the organisation can do to assist in driving a compliance culture is of huge value o their business and having a proactive mechanism not only at onboarding but established at that stage, can prove invaluable.

If you are struggling to establish or maintain a compliance culture in your organisation or you have a high level of onboarding in your industry (e.g. the recruitment sector) then consider how Signarus Orchestra Read and Comply™, when used as part of your overall onboarding mechanism, will really help you create a far more compliance-orientated team from day one.

For more information about how Signarus solutions will help you build a strong compliance culture get in touch on (UK) 020 7 788 9445.

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