In the age of the #metoo movement, sexual harassment training has never been more important. There are a variety of reasons why hiring an external trainer is a better choice than conducting the training in-house. Your internal Human Resources team may not be an expert in this area. It’s critical that the most up to date information is presented. When professional development training comes from the outside, it shows a commitment to the topic, so people are more likely to pay attention and attend the training. Most importantly, who has the time? Developing engaging content and materials is time-consuming. Why not hire an expert so you can focus on other Human Resources priorities?
Chances are good that your Human Resources team does not have a lot of experience dealing with sexual harassment. They may have never investigated a claim or had to assist a victim or deal with an aggressor. Trainers are required to have at least 2 years of experience in training, investigating, and advising. The federal and state laws are constantly changing, such as the new 2018 requirement to cover gender issues and sexual orientation. How can you be sure your team is up to date on the latest topics? Popping in a video is not enough. Training is required to be interactive and should include features such as role playing, reviewing industry-specific scenarios and include a question and answer segment.
All companies in California with 50 or more employees must provide at least 2 hours of training to all supervisors within 6 months of hire and every 2 years after. These are very busy people for whom attending a mandatory 2-hour training can be difficult. A professional trainer with practical experience, interesting anecdotes, and well-made training materials is more likely to present the topic in a meaningful way that engages the trainees. You want them to feel that the training was beneficial to them, and not a waste of company time.
Busy Human Resource personnel are rarely idle. Managing benefits packages, compliance reports, hiring and firing, counseling, and all the other requirements of the job leave little time to develop engaging content and materials. A professional trainer will ensure the content is customized for your business, meets the California training requirements and is delivered in a timely manner. Your trainer can customize your training to include specific topics related to professional behavior in the workplace such as discrimination, bullying, respect in the workplace and other company-specific behaviors you want to include.
Providing accurate, engaging, and up to date sexual harassment training is mandatory and necessary. Consider hiring a professional to conduct your next sexual harassment training. In this climate, it’s too important to skimp in this area. Replace #metoo with #nothere at your company.
Laura Henderson is a Human Resources professional with over 20 years experience working with a variety of businesses.