The following was written jointly by Peter Scott of Peter Scott Consulting and David Jacobs of The Legal Training Consultancy and first appeared as a briefing note at

This month’s Briefing Note has been written jointly with David Jacobs who is the founder of The Legal Training Consultancy and is recognised as a pre-eminent creator of training programmes for professional businesses.

Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.” Benjamin Franklin.

Now that 16 hours CPD training a year for solicitors is history, the focus of learning and development has changed from how long it takes to how effective it is. In reality of course learning and development should always have been approached from that point of view.

What precisely is “e-learning”? Our definition goes way beyond simple webinars. It is an online course where participants become engaged, involved and immersed in the learning process. It involves forms of action or reaction such as multiple choice quizzes, tests, e-learning scenarios, simulations, animation videos etc, that dramatically deepen the understanding of the subject matter.

When we talk about the effectiveness of learning and development, we are really talking about:

– The cost – effective use of a business’s time and money (time is money!)
– Creating the most effective learning outcomes (incorporating of course the need to always
demonstrate “competence”)

On top of this there are two more essentials:

– Making learning fun, enjoyable, engaging, stimulating and motivating
– Making parts of it accessible at anytime, anywhere and on anything from a desktop to a
Smart phone.

Identifying a firm’s learning and development issues is the easier part. Implementing learning solutions in a way that ensures buy-in from partners, associates, trainees and trainers can be a bit more challenging. However, this is where technology can give training a helping hand in the form of standalone or supplementary learning tools such as:

– E-learning
– Gamification of training
– Software which assesses the training needs of individuals and delivers personalised
training, followed by personalised assessment, all of which will be fully documented to
demonstrate compliance
– Business simulations

E-learning for example is beginning to have a major part to play in shaping the future of legal training both in-house within law firms and also in providing highly effective training and education for clients. For example, a firm can develop its own bespoke, entirely personalised e-learning programme to disseminate to its clients as a way of being seen to add greater value to them.

E-learning can really score over other forms of learning and development in so many ways:

– more value provided, with greater flexibility and impact
– productivity improvements by losing less fee earning time on preparation and delivery
– delivering a valued resource with a much longer shelf life than for example a half day conference or
breakfast meeting
– better interactivity and identification of specific needs, strengths and areas for development
– far less dependence on an individual’s presentation skills and much more controllable – there’s less to
go wrong.

Finding the right learning and development solutions for a law firm can be daunting and if you are currently considering the best options for your firm and you would like to talk these through with us then please contact either of us using the contact details below:

Peter Scott

mobile 07725 039 573

David Jacobs
mobile 0773 828 2667