Skillsoft Survey finds compliance and Health and Safety teams “struggle” with lack of automation

A new study from Skillsoft has found that Health and Safety teams are struggling with time-intensive manual processes to track employee training along with a lack of automation for delivering that training. A failure to automate operations with technology means these teams have less time to deliver the real value of their expertise – developing strategy, embedding training and helping employees across their organisation make the right compliance decisions.

The study reveals that more than three-quarters (76%) of teams are using manual processes to track employee understanding and engagement with compliance policies and related training material. Typically, this includes company-wide roadshows and ‘Toolbox Talks’ (24%), individual interviews (19%), surveys (18%) and logging policy responses (15%).

The legal, financial and reputational risks associated with compliance failures are significant. As a result, compliance is now a central part of business operations and the broader corporate strategy. Compliance and Health and Safety teams need to go beyond simply rolling out a compliance programme. Rather, they need to demonstrate employees understand it and actively buy into it.

Automation is key. However, the study found just 35% of Health and Safety teams can evaluate employee comprehension and understanding of critical risk issues automatically. Almost half (44%) are either unable to run automated evaluations or choose not to run any evaluations whatsoever.

The study also reveals that it could take up to a month for the majority (70%) of teams to run a full compliance audit report on employees. More than half (52%) stated their organisation cannot track employee attestation with electronic signatures to signal engagement with compliance policies.

Other key highlights of the study include the following:

*More than half (57%) of Health and Safety teams struggle to provide localised training content, policy documents and operating procedures in different languages

*Nearly three-quarters (71%) stated that the Health and Safety training technology currently available is not specific enough for their organisation. Only a quarter (25%) believe the current technology is relevant for their business. 4% responded that it isn’t at all relevant

*Although the majority (70%) of Health and Safety professionals believe technology complements what they already do, 13% believe it has no role whatsoever and 5% feel that it would make no difference

“There’s huge pressure on Health and Safety professionals to ensure they stay ahead of changes in the law and developments in compliance strategy at the same time as bringing a real-world, practical approach to promoting a lawful and ethical culture in their organisation,” said Andy Nickolls, senior director of compliance solutions for the EMEA at Skillsoft. “This survey suggests many seem reluctant to adopt new technology, but the right solutions can help compliance professionals do far more than simply satisfy legal requirements. Technology can help compliance and Health and Safety professionals quickly establish understanding across the entire organisation and free them up to focus on developing more innovative strategies that support the broader corporate strategy.”

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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