The 7 Best Workplace Violence Training Programs of 2020

Help your workforce learn how to respond in a violent situation

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Violence in the workplace costs employers roughly $120 billion each year. Now more than ever, it’s critical for employers to provide their employees with adequate training to prevent or respond. To compile our list of workplace violence training providers, we looked at over two dozen human resources and compliance training companies, workplace safety organizations, and other training consultants or providers. We narrowed it down from there.

When choosing a provider, it’s important for employers to find a provider that is easy to use. Training needs to be easy to find and purchase and also compliance-driven. This training is important for employers to provide—not only to ensure that they protect their employees and potentially their customers, but also to ensure that they comply with the requirements of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other government regulators.

The 7 Best Workplace Violence Training Programs of 2020

Best Overall: Compliance Training Group

Compliance Training Group

Compliance Training Group

Compliance Training Group is a division of Employers Choice, which was founded in Los Angeles in 2002 and has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Compliance Training Group offers a number of employer training programs, including sexual harassment, conflict resolution, substance abuse training, and workplace ethics.

Compliance Training Group is our best overall workplace violence training company because it’s easy to purchase and use online. Training is also very cost-effective and not too time-consuming. The level of flexibility, accessibility, and cost-efficiency that Compliance Training Group offers makes it an ideal option for employers.

Workplace violence training from Compliance Training Group is a single 60-minute module that costs $30. The course covers topics such as how to identify warning signs of potential violence, preventative measures, how to develop a workplace violence policy, and coordinating a response plan for your employees.

Runner-Up, Best Overall: 360 Training

360 Training

360 Training

360 Training is an online workplace training platform with over 3 million users worldwide. The company was founded in 1997 and is based in Austin, Texas. The company has a B- rating with the BBB. While the company has over 60 registered customer complaints, including several about customer service, none are specifically related to workplace violence training.

360 Training was chosen as our runner-up because it offers the same degrees of flexibility and accessibility as Compliance Training Group. Where 360 Training comes up short is in customer service, as there are a number of complaints online.

Workplace violence training from 360 Training is completely online and self-paced. The program is accessible 24/7 and offers customer service every day of the week. The training costs $20 per person but includes discounts when you buy licenses for multiple employees. The course lasts for one hour and provides a certificate of completion at the end.

In addition to its course on workplace violence, 360 Training also offers several types of OSHA training, especially for construction companies.

Best Active Shooter Series: Mastery Training Services

Mastery Training Services

Mastery Training Services

Mastery Training Services is owned by Mastery Technologies, a technology company that started as an accounting software firm in 1974. The company is based in Novi, Michigan, and has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau with zero customer complaints.

Mastery’s workplace violence training consists mostly of a series of videos available for $20 each. Among the topics covered in the videos are recognizing threats, bullying in the workplace, and managing anger to prevent violence. The company offers discounts for employers that want to purchase multiple licenses, but training is not certified by OSHA or other government regulators.

We chose Mastery as the best provider of active shooter training because, unlike several others on this list, that is the company's primary focus. Mastery's training is also easier to use and more cost-efficient than custom on-site training.

In addition to its already-reasonable pricing, Mastery also makes discounts available for companies that want to purchase training for multiple employees. Mastery doesn’t make these discounts publicly available but explained that it works with employers to structure individual licensing agreements. These agreements vary based on company size and the number and types of courses that an employer is interested in. To structure a bulk discount, employers reportedly pay an individual licensing fee plus a discounted rate per-employee, which lowers the cost per view of the courses.

Best Free OSHA Training: OSHAcademy

OSHAcademy

OSHAcademy

OSHAcademy was founded in 1999 and is based in Beaverton, Oregon. The company is owned by Geigle Safety Group and has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau with no complaints. OSHAcademy has a number of workplace training programs, including dealing with hazardous materials and using personal protective equipment.

Workplace violence training from OSHAcademy includes a discussion of topics such as the warning signs of potential workplace violence and prevention measures.

OSHAcademy offers free access to all of its workplace violence training materials—users just have to pay for their certificate, starting at $21 for a PDF download. While employers have the option of paying for certificates for employees who complete this training, deciding not to pay for these certificates may make it difficult for employers to deny liability in the future if employees are impacted by workplace violence.

Best Course Variety: TrainingABC

TrainingABC

TrainingABC

Training ABC is a distributor of employer training materials based in Gahanna, Ohio. The company has an A+ Better Business Bureau rating with no complaints and advertises customer service via email seven days a week. We chose TrainingABC as the best for course variety because it offers training about dozens of different topics, including ADA compliance, age discrimination, cybersecurity, and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO). The topics covered by TrainingABC’s video library are much broader than most other compliance training platforms.

TrainingABC has a library of online courses and programs related to workplace violence training. The company doesn’t appear to make these videos—it just distributes them. Videos range from $200 to $350 each and there are also a number of shorter videos on narrower topics that cost $20 each. It does not appear that TrainingABC programs are certified for OSHA or any other government agencies. This may make TrainingABC ideal for employers who have small staffs, or as an add-on option for companies that also provide certified training from a separate provider.

Best In-Person Seminar: Crisis Prevention Institute

Crisis Prevention Institute

Crisis Prevention Institute

The Crisis Prevention Institute (CPI) was founded in 1980 and is based in Milwaukee. The company has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and no customer complaints. CPI offers a few different types of training, nearly all of them related to crises or workplace violence. These topics include nonviolent crisis intervention, verbal intervention training, and prepare training to help employees build trust, improve responses to crises, and re-establish connections with employees who have acted out in the workplace.

In addition, CPI hosts in-person events around the country that cover workplace violence. These courses start at $1,250 for a one-day seminar and can run $3,000 or more for multi-day programs. CPI’s single-day course focuses on strategies to de-escalate and prevent crises in the workplace.

We included CPI as our best provider for in-person training because it offers structured classes on set schedules with predetermined fees. Knowing what to expect is clear when an employer signs up.

Best Free Non-Certified Training: Skillsoft

Skillsoft

Skillsoft

Skillsoft is an Irish company that started in 1998 and is headquartered in Dublin. Although the company has its U.S. headquarters in Nashua, New Hampshire, it is not currently rated by Better Business Bureau. Skillsoft offers a few types of workplace training, including DOT-required motor carrier and transportation safety training and workplace harassment training.

Among its other training programs, Skillsoft gives users free active shooter training. This course is part of a broader training program, but Skillsoft provides complimentary access to the active shooter segment. However, this training does not appear to meet all requirements set by OSHA or other regulators.

We like Skillsoft’s offering for non-certified training because, while it is only part of a broader program and focuses specifically on active shooter situations, it is a high-quality program from an international compliance training firm—and it's free. While using this training may not help employers to meet requirements set by OSHA, it is nevertheless beneficial for small employers or as additional training when paired with other training products that offer employee certificates.

What Is Workplace Violence Training?

Employers provide workplace violence training to employees in order to help ensure a safe work environment. These programs typically cover a variety of topics, including active shooter training, how to identify workplace threats, preventative measures, and how to create a company response plan.

While many people associate these types of training with larger companies, every business can benefit from them. This helps the employer ensure that they meet requirements set by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other regulators.

An Overview of Legal Ramifications

Through OSHA, the Department of Labor requires employers to provide a safe work environment for their employees. While OSHA doesn’t have specific requirements that employers provide training related to workplace violence, the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 is generally considered to require training about topics such as workplace violence in its General Duty Clause. This clause means that employers can be held liable if employees are impacted by violence that occurs in their workplace.

What Does Workplace Violence Training Typically Include?

There are many types of workplace violence training and they vary greatly depending on the provider an employer chooses and whether they elect for online, in-person, or on-site training. However, most workplace violence training programs include guidance on how to respond to an active shooter, how to identify potential threats, and preventative measures. Training programs may also include techniques for anger management and de-escalating situations that can lead to violence. Some will even help business owners draft company-specific response plans or workplace violence policies.

What Does Workplace Violence Training Typically Exclude?

Workplace violence training typically doesn’t help employees work out individual interpersonal issues, nor does it typically train employees to confront potential threats. It certainly doesn’t train employees in the use of firearms or other tools to protect company property. Workplace violence training is designed specifically to help keep employees safe and (if necessary) help ensure customers’ safety as well.

What Are the Expected Costs of Workplace Violence Training?

The cost of workplace violence training depends on the type of training you choose. Employers can find short online courses that start at $20 per employee, while longer, more comprehensive online training can run into hundreds of dollars for packages. In-person training seminars typically start at around $1,000 and can go up from there.

How We Chose the Best Workplace Violence Training Programs

To compile our list of the best workplace violence training programs, we reviewed more than two dozen human resource consultants and compliance training platforms. We focused our list on companies that make workplace violence training programs accessible and easy to purchase directly online. We tried to include providers with a range of offerings, including quick and easy online courses, OSHA-certified providers, in-person seminars, and free training options. We focused on these issues because of the importance of cost and accessibility to employers and the employees they need to train.

Article Sources

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. Neckerman. "Workplace Violence Costs Employers More than $120 Billion Each Year." Accessed April 7, 2020.

  2. Better Business Bureau. "Employers Choice." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  3. Better Business Bureau. "360 Training, Inc." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  4. Better Business Bureau. "Mastery Technologies Inc." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  5. Better Business Bureau. "Geigle Safety Group." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  6. Better Business Bureau. "TrainingABC LLC." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  7. Better Business Bureau. "Crisis Prevention Institute Inc." Accessed April 6, 2020.

  8. Better Business Bureau. "Skillsoft." Accessed April 6, 2020.