Why organisations should offer anti-bribery staff awareness training

Organisations don’t like to consider the possibility that their employees accept bribes. We often think of it as something that only happens at multinationals or governments, but corruption exists in all industries, and it has huge consequences.

The World Bank estimates that over $1 trillion (about £790 billion) is paid each year in bribes, and the UK plays a huge part in this figure. According to the National Crime Agency, at least £90 billion in illicit funds are laundered through the country annually.

In this blog, we take a closer look at the way organisations are affected by bribery and explain why you need to educate staff on the threat.

What you need to know about bribery

The UK Bribery Act 2010 defines bribery as persuading someone to perform an official business function improperly by giving them a financial payment or other advantage.

This nuance is important, because it establishes the fact that bribery doesn’t only refer to cash payments. It can also mean purchasing someone gifts or proposing a quid pro quo scenario –offering someone favouritism in the future if you reward them now.

Most employees will understand that cash bribes are not to be tolerated, but they might not be aware that it is equally illegal to receive other forms of gifts in return for favours.

They may not also understand the difference between a bribe and a gift. It is perfectly legal for someone to send an employee, say, a bottle of wine or tickets to a show, as long as there is no suggestion that the recipient should do something in return.

If an employee fails to understand this difference, they and the organisation is liable. The former could lose their job and face jailtime, while the latter may receive fines of up to 10% of their turnover and be prohibited from tendering certain contracts.

As such, bribery is something that organisations must take seriously – and that means educating staff on the risks associated with it.

Getting started with anti-bribery training

Anti-bribery training isn’t just about educating staff not to take payoffs. An effective training course also ensures that employees have the skills and knowledge to promote integrity within the workplace.

Regular training will help your employees understand your policies and legal requirements to maintain an ethical environment and preserve the trust of customers, partners and the public.

You can get started with GRC e-Learning’s Anti-Bribery Staff Awareness E-learning Course.

Developed by experts, this online course will enable your employees to identify the difference between a bribe and a gift, and help them understand how best to respond.