Radically simplifying a global

pharmaceutical company’s

US compliance info

The behaviour

The US employees at a global pharmaceutical company were struggling to comprehend the mammoth 80-page Commercial Practices and Policies (CPP) document. It meant they were constantly calling the already-under-pressure compliance team for answers over email and phone, sometimes dozens of times a day. The process needed a radical overhaul, fast.

Worse still, what about the people who weren’t calling the compliance team? There was a real risk of employees being so bamboozled by the policy docs that they wouldn’t follow them.

The big question

Could we turn the company’s 32,000-words of policy and practices PDFs into a digital learning experience that made staying compliant far easier and more enjoyable to do?

A selection of highlights from this project

What we did

We converted all US compliance documentation into brand-new US policy hub designed to make staying compliant super-easy. From start to finish, the project took just 14 weeks. 

We did it by:
  • Prioritising the content into the most-used and most-important policies.
  • Making the priority info easier to find, and more bite-sized to digest.
  • Simplifying all the remaining information, leaving no stone unturned.
  • Creating practical job-specific learner journeys.
  • Developing 5 animated videos and recall quizzes.
  • Designing 10 infographics and guides to bolster it all.

A selection of highlights from animations we created

A clip from one of the videos we created

Why it worked


We process and remember information better when it’s broken down into smaller parts. It’s why you say your phone number in 3-to-4 digit sections rather than making people try to remember all 11 numbers in one go.

Here, rather than relying on a single, giant policy document, we broke up and slimmed-down policy docs into smaller, bite-size chunks. In fact in the end, we cut the original document’s word count by 75%, allowing people to understand and remember the information they needed far more easily.

Fluency shortcuts

Information that’s easy to understand is more believable. And, as an added bonus, the simpler you’re able to explain complicated information, the smarter you look as the writer.

Here, we were painstaking in keeping our copy short and to the point to make sure the most important info came across loud and clear for time-pressured sales staff to read who’re out there on the US’ open roads.

Spacing effect

We’re more likely to remember information if we’re exposed to it repeatedly at different times and across different environments.

The module-by-module division of content helped users access policies in stages, coming back to the material when they were ready, while the most important messages were repeated in a variety of formats including animations, graphics, guides and checklists.

Spacing out learning in this way – with lots of overlap – is a powerful way to make sure people remember the key points you need them to internalise.

The results

“Thank you for the exceptional creativity and support on this project. You exceeded my every expectation. The work you have done is appreciated by the entire US Pharma and Medical teams and I am expecting great feedback from our employees at the annual review.”

– Employee in Compliance, Ethics & risk management department

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