Having recently stepped down after completing his six-year tenure, Grant Scott reflects on his time as vice president of the CII Local Institutes
How has the local institute network developed during your tenure?
There has been a significant increase in the levels of support offered to members at a local level. Six years ago, there were about 300 CPD events offered by local institutes; today that number is about 1,000.
All events are delivered by the network of local volunteers with support from the CII’s regional membership team, with whom I have worked closely to forge stronger links between the CII and our 56 institutes across the UK. Each event is delivered to a standard of excellence, covering relevant and topical subjects to help our members achieve their annual CPD.
Personally, a key focus has been making myself visible, providing an opportunity for members to engage with me via their local institute. Being in frequent contact with virtually every institute has really helped to develop a conduit between the local institute network and the CII.
The role has given me the opportunity to represent the voice of the ordinary member with the CII’s decision-makers. As a result, local institutes have developed a closer working relationship with both the CII and fellow institutes.
What are the key challenges for the network?
During 2020, I have been hugely impressed by, and proud of, both the resilience of the network and its ability to adapt quickly to deliver a range of online CPD offerings. The institutes have been able to bring even greater focus to their CPD activity and have seen increased engagement in communications and greater attendance at their webinars.
In the long term, the local institutes will be looking to build relationships with the CII’s societies to create an even more comprehensive support programme. The societies are there to offer technical backup to the institutes and to help them in specialisation areas. The key challenge is now to bring the network and the societies together more, for one to support the other. Members will see greater benefits in the shape of a more all-inclusive, one-stop shop on their doorstep.
What does the future hold for the local institute network?
The future is very positive for the 56 local institutes, all of which have a clear vision of what they want to do to support members and how they can achieve it. The hub of engagement that we have developed means that LIs are able to connect and learn from one another.
The network will now continue expanding its excellent offering on CPD and developing other educational activities, revision and study support, and working closely with local organisations.
What are your key achievements in the role?
I am proud of my work in helping to set up the Local Institute National Forum – a modern and democratic collective that allows each institute to nominate a representative from its council to act as its mouthpiece at a regional and national level. This provides a fast and direct route to the CII executive and board. The forum has helped to ensure the network of volunteers really does have a voice and a role in helping to shape the CII offering available to our members locally.