Is  Code of Conduct Training a Waste of Time? In a word “Yes”. Probably.

Dependable and trustworthy employees don’t need code of conduct training as these individuals already do the right thing – even when no one is watching. Staff who might be tempted or inclined to nefarious activities just ignore the training or treat it with disdain.

Code of Conduct has become a compliance exercise over the years and is often quickly resurrected and rolled out after a fraud or large misdemeanour has occurred in the workplace.

Why do I believe this to be the case? Through my personal experience, witnessing the fallout of one of the largest state government frauds in Australia’s history. When Joel Barlow (AKA “the Tahitian Prince) fraudulently acquired $16.6 million from a health department.

“The Tahitian Prince” achieved this huge fraud quite simply; by creating a false company, writing fraudulent invoices and sending them to the Accounts Payable department – and getting paid. The organisation missed the most basic of internal controls checks that would have stopped at the first invoice instead of ending at the 65th fraudulent invoice.

Code of Conduct training in this situation would have been irrelevant and such training would not have prevented this fraud because decent people don’t create false companies, write fraudulent invoices, pocket millions of dollars and go on lavish spending sprees. Good people however do need the tools to identify when a fraudster has the opportunity to infiltrate an organisation.

What if, for 2019, you rethought how you deal with the Code of Conduct training dilemma and rebadged it as Fraud Awareness training – and have the added benefit of showing employees how to save 5% of budget through identifying fraud in your workplace (Source; Certified Fraud Examiners 2018 Global study on occupational fraud and abuse.)

To ensure fraud awareness training is engaging for your staff, we have developed a unique approach to reverse engineer how the content is delivered. Starting with a sensational news story detailing an actual health specific fraud where everyone can be an expert in hindsight (supported by other relevant stories of fraud in the workplace), then help staff identify the red flags of fraudulent behaviours and finally drill down to the internal controls which were circumvented.

People remember a great story but are unlikely to recall a section of legislation referring to an internal control. However, by highlighting the importance of internal controls through storytelling and real life examples, your employees will gain a long term understanding of the benefits of internal controls for themselves and the organisation.

Instead of boring your staff with mandatory code of conduct training would you like to be the manager that implements an entertaining and informative fraud awareness session that staff talk about for years to come. Our course shows how to potentially reduce expenditure by 5% by preventing a multitude of small and large frauds, redirect funds into better organisational outcomes, educate staff in the importance of internal controls? Contact me by email at [email protected] to find out more.

More information on Fraud Awareness training can be found here –

About the author

John Allen is one of the world’s leading experts in fraud awareness in the healthcare sector. Understanding this micro-niche became a passion after personally witnessing the consequences from a large workplace fraud. The resulting political fallout, impact on staff morale and the health department’s reputation impacted John personally and professionally.

From his experience, John tells the story of the human failings and systematic weaknesses that allowed this fraud to be perpetuated for many years without being noticed. John’s personal story is engaging and delivered with the energy of a keynote speech.

John delivers real culture change in your organisation through this healthcare fraud awareness training. At the conclusion of the presentation, many health professionals are shocked at how naïve and innocent they feel through being so unaware of the multitude of frauds possible in healthcare services. This tailor-made presentation gives health professionals the insight and confidence to identify fraud, review and tighten up internal controls leading to savings in their hospital. Savings better spent on patients.

John has over 20 years of healthcare industry experience, is a CPA and an associate member of the Certified Fraud Examiners since 2012.

You can contact John at [email protected] or visit the website at

The thoughts of this blog are of the individual writer and not necessarily those of the Nursing CPD Institute. To read our full disclaimer click here >>