Quick Q&A: Online Training as Legal Defense
We’ve all heard a well trained staff equals higher profits and higher productivity. But did you realize that using a CMS for online training can be your best legal defense also?
This week, the “A” in our Q&A comes to us courtesy of Patrick Sanders and Kynzie Sims.
Patrick Sanders, Of Counsel
Patrick assists clients facing labor and employment matters in arbitration and mediation. His broad experience includes collective bargaining negotiations, union organizational campaigns, wrongful discharge accusations, employment discrimination claims and the resolution of safety and health issues. He has been involved in the negotiation of national and regional collective bargaining agreements in the construction, transportation, mining and pipeline transportation industries.
Kynzie Sims, Legal Content Product Manager
Kynzie is Compli’s resident authority on all things legal and compliance. She is a regular presenter at our webinars and in-person events, and a chief designer of our content products. Before joining Compli, Kynzie clerked for the Marion County District Attorney’s Office and served as in-house counsel and employment content manager for NAVEX Global.
Q: How does online training with a Compliance Management System help with a legal defense?
Patrick: There are a couple ways, I believe, are that your Compliance Management System does this. First it creates the documentation that both your HR and your Legal Defense Team needs to show that accidents, incidents, and circumstances were as described. You know that when these events occur, there is always later a recast by plaintiff’s counsel, to show that this was part of discriminatory intent. It is critically important that we have these facts, circumstances, all of the key things that we need documented before the dispute erupts before we have a claim before the EEOC, we have this as a business record.
Why do I keep saying business records? Let me tell you after trying scores of jury trials. A business record that was completed before the thing became an issue before plaintiff filed a complaint those are given much, much greater weight in front of a jury. And if all you have is verbal testimony, you’ve got the real problem of, “Well, that’s what you’re saying now, but you still work for the company.” What do you think you’re gonna say? Who can show me something that was done at the time that it occurred? That’s what I’m looking for as a juror.
And second its important to remember, throughout this whole thing, you’re training your future leaders. And so while, yes, there is a legal aspect to it all. If done correctly, you will also train your future leaders to be operating in a compliant fashion. So there’s a couple of thoughts from the legal side. If there are questions, we’ll be happy to take them. But otherwise, I’m gonna throw it back to you.
Kynzie: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. The thing that you said that really resonated with me is how this can put your company in a very defensible position meaning, if you’re keeping those business records up-to-date, if a claim does come down the line, that you’re going to be prepared to handle that with a favorable outcome to your business.