This article authored by Bill Koch originally appeared in the January 2015 issue of ALM’s LJN LegalTech Newsletter.
Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP’s (Womble Carlyle) technology training and online learning programs were in need of an upgrade. The firm’s overall program was originally designed around using local trainers in specific offices to assist with hands-on training and address individual lawyer technology challenges through traditional, classroom-based training methods. Even onboarding of new talent was handled in the traditional way – seat the new hire in a room for days and inundate them with firm applications, policies and procedures. But, unprecedented firm growth, heightened emphasis on developing lawyers’ core technology competencies, and a need to streamline and automate existing eLearning processes led the firm to initiate a fundamental shift. As part of this core change, our firm outsourced its entire technology training delivery and reorganized around on-demand learning, distance learning and virtual coaching. Led by Lori Patton, the firm’s Chief Learning Officer and me, Director of Technology Services, we pursued a new strategy … partnering with technology training and learning specialist Encoretech to develop and deliver the firm’s new live distance training and coaching program.
Time to challenge the status quo
With over 500 lawyers across 14 offices, our firm’s trainers were challenged to cohesively support all staff, locally and remotely. Having physical trainers in certain locations favored those offices and local employee training needs, while hands-on training in non-trainer staffed offices was a bit more challenging, inefficient and often cost prohibitive. In addition to resource challenges, we realized that while the old training model of sending attorneys to training classes to ‘learn Word or Excel’ may work during a major rollout, it did not accommodate their busy schedules nor mirror the way users retain knowledge and learn new skills. Read more