The importance of listening – building the community around our CPD tool

BCE CPD tool pilot workshop

In late 2012, we launched a major national resource for Business and Community Engagement (BCE) professionals. Just over a year later and we’ve just rolled out version 2 with user-feedback based improvements and are witnessing a fantastic response in the BCE community.

What’s exciting about the resource that it’s the first of its kind – a professional development diagnostic tool encompassing all the various roles that fall under BCE.

Extensive national collaboration

The lead-up to the launch was hectic. Producing a new, nationally agreed framework had us collaborating with a huge number of stakeholders and BCE professionals across the UK.

We were also busy designing and building the self-assessment tool which lets users to map their skills against the national framework and find resources based on their individual results to help on their professional development journey.

But the work didn’t stop there. In the past two years, we’ve kept ourselves busy making sure the tool is a success and have been working to improve it even further.

New features benefit appraisals process

Throughout 2013, we travelled around the UK running a series of workshops to promote the tool and to listen to feedback from the people working in various BCE roles – the real users of the tool.

BCE CPD tool pilot workshops

The message that came out loud and clear was the desire to keep a history of the diagnosis results to track personal development and to act as an aid in the appraisal process.

Once we were back in the office, work began on enhancing the tool to incorporate this new feature together with other improvements such as enhanced security, an easier registration process and the ability to print out your diagnosis results.

Enhancing the development resource bank

We launched version 2 of the tool in December 2013 to an extremely positive response. Both user registrations and visitor numbers have increased by around a quarter during the short period since we launched.

We’re also continuing to see BCE staff realise the benefit of the tool both individually and in their teams.

Following a demonstration of the tool in Manchester during December, an entire BCE team are now using the tool and will be sharing their experiences with colleagues across the North West of England next month.

We’re extremely pleased with the response to the enhancements we’ve made but won’t stop there. Work is already underway to encourage suppliers of training and professional development resources to include their products on the site, and we’ll continue to promote the tool to BCE staff across the UK.