Inauguration Day: Anticipating Updated Workforce Regulations

The Capitol Building in Washington DC at night with reflection in pond, capital of the United States of America

As the inauguration ushers in a new political climate, it appears that there is a new business climate coming in as well. When Donald Trump is sworn into office on January 20, businesses may need to be aware of new rules and regulations on the horizon and should have processes in place for training and educating staff on the imminent changes.

Under the Trump administration, several key elements relating to business could be adjusted, including:

  • Healthcare
  • Overtime Regulations
  • Taxes
  • Laws About Minimum Wage
  • and more

While it’s too early to anticipate, just yet, it’s important that key staff are aware and educated about new rules and regulations to make appropriate adjustments and so that your business can stay in compliance. Training staff about new laws and regulations is the best way to prevent violations.

Understand Who Will Be Impacted

To start to implement a process for educating staff on regulation changes, it’s a good idea to first take a look at what positions within your organization could be impacted. Knowing how many teams or departments could be impacted can help you get a better understanding of the extent at which new regulations will need to be addressed and established.

Of course, you might not yet know what the changes are specifically, but perhaps some early training in change management or even courses on preparing for change might be of use for everyone.

This reminds me of a time early in my career when big changes in technology were fast approaching and our company knew it had to launch more advanced products in order to keep up with the competition. Being prepared was critical. They stepped up to the plate by offering training sessions on preparing for change and gave everyone a copy of the book “Who Moved My Cheese?” This effort showed employees they are forward thinking and care about their people.

Notify Employees of Changes ASAP

It’s the company’s responsibility to let employees know about any changes that may impact them as soon as possible. When a new rule or regulation comes into play, consider sending out emails, handing out flyers, putting up posters, and having a mandatory meeting to discuss the changes at hand.

It’s important for companies to explain new regulations to employees in a way that is efficient and easy to understand. Don’t make it a staff member’s sole responsibility to educate themselves about new rules, particularly if you feel it may impact them negatively. Addressing change proactively, such as health care coverage or overtime regulations, gives a company the opportunity to put a positive spin on the upcoming change and potentially ward off a possible decrease in morale that could be caused by the change.

Take Responsibility for Educating Staff About Changes

When a company pays particular attention to the way that they roll out new regulations and training initiatives, employees will notice and it will contribute to the overall company culture. The more user-friendly new regulation training is, the better.

These three scenarios outline poor, better, and the best way to implement training company-wide:

Poor: If an organization simply sends out an email with a 200-page pdf and says “read this in your spare time,” the organization is putting the responsibility on the employee to learn about the new regulations themselves.

Better: If a company hosts a training session after hours, the organization is taking on the burden of explaining the new rules, but because it’s after business hours, it is now inconveniencing the employee.

If a company holds training and workshops during work hours, they are taking on the responsibility of conveying the new regulations and also allowing employees time to learn during their regular workday, which does not inconvenience the employee.

Best: By establishing online training that addresses the new rules and regulations is truly the best practice for educating staff–especially when staff are able to learn through a course that is interesting and easy to understand.

When employees see that their company is taking steps to educate staff about new rules and regulations in a convenient and easy to understand way, it sends the message that the company cares about their employees, as well as the organization as a whole.

Appoint Research and Training Responsibilities to Leadership

Once a process for conveying the new rules and regulations to staff has been outlined, those in leadership roles will need to take on the burden of learning what the new regulations are and how to best convey that information to the workforce. It’s important that the leaders in question do the appropriate research and learn what applies to your business specifically.

A client of ours recently chose some key managers to take on the responsibility of understanding new rules and regulations which applied to their department specifically and relaying that information to the team. For the team members, receiving information from someone whom the team already has a relationship made it a much smoother transition, and allowed staff to ask questions and completely understand the new changes. This important step defused what may have been a tense situation and created a sense of transparency within the department and company-wide.

Once relevant information about new regulations is understood, leadership and management can work to outline a training, discussion, workshop, or another way of informing staff about the changes while leveraging the opportunity to have a positive impact on employees. One of the easiest ways to convey information is through a learning management system which allows staff to access training at their convenience.

Implement a Competency Management System for Workforce Training

If you already have a competency management system in place that includes a learning management element such as e-courses or similar, it’s easy to add courses and training related to updated regulations (learn more about learning management systems on our blog).

If you don’t yet have a competency management system, this could be the perfect time to establish one. Regular employee training on both mandatory compliance issues as well as industry standards is essential for your organization’s success.

To learn more about how implementing a learning management system as part of an overall competency management system can benefit your organization, contact Avilar today.

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