Quick: When was the last time you looked at your phone? If you’re like the average American, it was less than 12 minutes ago. Yep. We look at our phones about 80 times a day, for a total of about 4 hours.
We expect the magic devices in our pockets to answer all our questions, find our friends and show us around town. If I can’t find something using that search bar, does it even exist?
So, keeping that in mind, ask yourself this: How do your employees connect with the cornerstone of your compliance program, your Code of Conduct? Is it a printed document on a shelf or in a drawer somewhere? If it is online, does someone have to zoom in and slide a PDF back and forth across a screen to read it? (And, how likely are they, really, to do that?)
What message does it send about how relevant the Code is to an employee’s work, when it doesn’t feel relevant to their modern life?
The time has come not just to put your Code of Conduct online—but to make sure the digital version is easy to find, easy to use, and fits your employees’ lives and online habits.
And here’s the good news: It doesn’t have to be hard. Just like the modern world has raised our expectations for digital materials, it has also produced a wealth of tools that make them easier than ever to create and maintain.
When you’re ready to take your Code digital and choose a tool, partner or vendor, there are a few baseline requirements you should be looking for. Your digital Code should:
1. Work on every type of screen
We move from laptops to tablets to phones and back, without even thinking about it. Some parts of the world even leapfrogged over the personal computing revolution right to the handheld revolution—people without internet connections in their homes or at work rely on smartphones. Your Code should adapt to every type of screen so employees can always access it.
2. Be organized like your user thinks
That means several things: Top-level messaging should be front and center and easy to find. Navigation tools should use the language your user uses. And there should be multiple ways to find the same information.
3. Represent your brand
Generic just won’t cut it. Your Code should look and feel like it was created for your organization and no one else.
4. Be created by people with real compliance expertise
This one will always be true, no matter where your Code lives or how it is delivered. To ensure your Code is relevant to your users and delivers your company’s message, you need partners who are fully up to date with modern compliance best practices.
And some bonus nice-to-haves:
5. Be fully searchable
People use the modern internet like one giant search engine. We type what we’re looking for into a search bar and expect it to appear. When your Code works the same way, you increase opportunities for people to use and implement it.
6. Include tools and learning aids
Your Code can be more than a reference tool; it can be a teaching tool. Including interactive elements can help your employees better understand information—right at the same moment and in the same place where they are looking for it.
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