Developments in information technology are creating more and more opportunities for the automation of E&C programs. Automation and integration can benefit programs in many ways, including increasing effectiveness, efficiency and consistency. We’ve seen this trend begin to develop over the last few years, and we believe this is the year in which building an ‘e’ program should be a priority for every organization.
There are four key areas of E&C programs where we believe automation will make the biggest difference: Incident Management, Training, Policy Management and Code of Conduct.
Key Steps for Organizations to Take:
Each organization has a responsibility to respond to reports of wrongdoing in a clear and consistent manner.
The Helpline in most cases is the central element of a successful E&C program, it allows for all employees to have a safe and protected voice. Each organization has a responsibility to respond to reports of wrongdoing in a clear and consistent manner. Without one central incident management system designed specifically to manage and analyze reported issues, this can be nearly impossible. The days of Excel workbooks and clumsy tracking tools are over – a modern E&C program needs a tool capable of advanced reporting, consistent process and defined workflow. These elements can help organizations become more aware of potential trends, improve their investigation efficiencies and also create a consistent workflow which allows for predictable and repeatable investigation timelines.
For most organizations, it’s already likely that a significant component of their training is delivered via electronic means, but with a diverse workforce it is important that organizations continue to update how training is delivered. Short-form learning vignettes can be used to refresh on specific topics, or address a localized problem. Since short-form learnings are quick and direct, they are also quite effective at training executives and boards of directors.
Additionally, administering training from a learning management system will aid in confirming attestation, allow for employees to take the training from multiple devices and help in creating an auditable documentation trail.
Policy Management may strike fear in the hearts of those who have had to maintain policies by hand. Fortunately, automating your policy management process gives you the ability to write, update, distribute and garner attestations all within one platform. This allows for organizations to automate their workflow related to policy management from legal review to employee attestations. A well-designed policy management tool will allow for organizations to be audit-ready. This includes easily mapping E&C policies to the relevant standards, allowing auditors to quickly find what they are looking for.
Code of Conduct
In simple terms, the Code of Conduct is the face of the E&C program.
In simple terms, the Code of Conduct is the face of the E&C program. It is the central guiding document for all employees, and is that to which the public and third parties will hold you accountable. Since the Code of Conduct is so vital to the success of E&C programs, transforming the document into an interactive format will improve the readability and understanding of the content.
A few ways to help improve your Code are:
- Update the design to include compelling graphics and ensure it is aligned to the organization’s brand guidelines
- Include navigation tools and icons within the document
- Embed videos and short-form trainings
- Incorporate internal policy links so that employees may learn more if they desire
- Establish a unified format displayable on multiple device types