Many countries in the world are suffering from money laundering, financial service providers therefore need a robust Anti-Money Launderring (AML) learning programme to enable their workforce to identify and mitigate financial crime risks. Here are some of the reasons why the courses are so important:

Complying with complex laws - AML laws can be highly complex and so this isn’t an issue that workers within the financial services industry can’t be expected to understand and manage effectively. In order to be aware of the risks, identify unusual activity and report potential money laundering, employees need access to appropriate and in-depth training. Also, because the legislation in this area is continually changing, AML learning and development programmes are required to help workforces to be compliant with the latest regulations.  

Helping to tackle global crimes - As well as a legal obligation to work to prevent money laundering, organisations have a moral duty to do their best to thwart this type of activity. Money laundering is often an indicator of serious crimes including arms trading, drug dealing and terrorism. Effective AML training can play a vital role in helping organisations to ensure they don’t facilitate these types of criminal activity.

Maintaining trust - Because money laundering is frequently related to serious crimes, businesses suffer major reputational damage. Consumers, investors and commentators tend to take a very negative view of failures in AML policy. Ultimately, this translates into weakened sales figures and a lack of investment, which is of course very bad news for companies’ profits and overall success. When trust is lost over an issue as significant as this, it can take a very long time for organisations to regain it - and in some cases their brand image may never fully recover.

Building a strong compliance culture that empowers employees - By offering their employees robust and thorough AML training, businesses empower their people to do their jobs confidently, effectively and efficiently. Also, by placing importance on these courses, organisations send a strong message from the top that they take this issue seriously. In turn, this helps to create a strong compliance culture in which staff members feel empowered to perform their AML duties.

The risks of not investing in this training...

The stakes are undeniably high when it comes to controlling the threat posed by money laundering, businesses that neglect this element of risk management find themselves facing serious problems. The burden to stop this criminal activity largely falls to individual organisations, so shortcomings in AML policy and management lead to major fines. In addition, the harm caused to companies’ reputations can be irreversible and highly destructive.

As well as increasing organisational risks, a lack of suitable AML training poses difficulties for employees. Without the right learning and development programmes, employees feel out of their depth in this complicated area, meaning they find their jobs more stressful and difficult. In turn, this harms morale within organisations and cause an increase in staff turnover. It makes it more difficult for companies to recruit and retain the most capable workers too. Also, when people are unsure how to perform important aspects of their roles, they tend to complete their tasks more slowly, so a lack of AML training leads to inefficiencies within organisations.