Clyde & Co is a leading international law firm providing a full range of legal services across 120 countries. Their work is cross-border, high profile and complex. With over 1300 staff based in 24 offices worldwide, they have genuine in-depth knowledge and expertise in their chosen industries. Clyde & Co don't just talk about excellence, they deliver on their promise.
BackgroundSupporting lawyers is pivotal to ensuring excellence in terms of the service Clyde & Co provides for its clients. Amongst the support Clyde & Co offer, secretarial and high level document production is at the core of service delivery.
Heading this team of secretarial support are a group of secretaries that have already demonstrated high level skills in terms of producing documentation - this group are known as Super Users and their role encompasses supporting the use of Microsoft Office and other software packages amongst the secretarial and legal population. They also work closely with the IT Team and assist with the deployment of new software.
Although the Super Users have access to additional training, periodical IT user group meetings and provide an invaluable service, Jan Holmes, IT Training Manager, believed that the role could be enhanced and should be validated. Jan was therefore looking for a form of qualification - a way of benchmarking and accrediting the skills which were pivotal to the role of Super User and which would become part of their job specification.
Why Microsoft Office Specialist?The role of the Super User at Clyde & Co really focuses on IT and in particular the use and support of Microsoft Office. This is the product they and their colleagues use on a day-to-day basis and Clyde & Co were therefore looking for a simple way of recognising their skill set and providing them with a qualification which would justify their role and the extra income the Super Users earn.
Attending a Microsoft Office Specialist ("MOS") Forum held by training and accreditation specialists, Platinum Training Solutions in February 2010, Jan discovered a simple solution to her requirement - examination and a globally recognised qualification in Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint that could be delivered by her own training team at Clyde & Co offices in London and Guildford.
How do the Super Users Become Microsoft Certified?Clyde & Co provided MOS workshops delivered by their internal training team together with study guides and practice software to support the Super Users towards MOS examination. Training Rooms were made available for the Super Users to practice during and outside of work and some users also practiced at their desks.
In line with the advice given by Platinum Training Solutions, mock assessment and examination technique were also provided to ensure the super users were ready to take the exam. In addition, Jan and her training team have provided full support throughout the training and accreditation programme which has already seen a number attain passes in Word, Excel, Outlook and PowerPoint. Examination takes place in the London and Guildford training rooms and the IT trainers are adept at administering and invigilating the exams.
How has Microsoft Office Specialist Benefitted the Organisation?MOS has provided the Super Users and Clyde & Co with a number of benefits. There is a general increase in their understanding of Microsoft Office - it has reinforced how things work rather than the super users just following a process. The Super Users have an increased respect amongst their peer groups and with the IT support teams. Perhaps the most surprising benefits for Jan, her team and Clyde & Co is the increase in self-esteem and how the Super Users have built strong relationships with one another whilst working towards a common goal.
What's Next?Having seen the benefits that have been gained from MOS with the Super Users at Clyde & Co, Jan is committed to continuing their skills development with an expectation that they will all work towards the MOS Master status. This will also provide a benchmark for all newly recruited Super Users. In addition, Clyde & Co are considering MOS certification in Word for their secretarial support teams.