Continuing professional development

For this project, the school wanted to tackle a familiar problem - ensuring that staff who had identified training requirements during their appraisal process actually got on the courses they needed.

What often happened was that, for all the good intentions, the next time anyone looked at the appraisal sheet was at the next year's appraisal.

After examining various approaches, such as creating a standalone database in MS Access or purchasing a dedicated software package, the school decided that it made more sense to set up Facility to store the required data. This would mean that all the rest of the data about staff - from names and personal details, to their attendance records and what departments they were in - could be easily linked to the CPD data.

To this end, the Staff Events module was customised so that office staff could log all the development needs that were identified during the appraisal process. Once a particular course had been identified and booked to meet the development need in question, the 'CPD' event could be updated with this information. There was even room to add the attendee's rating of the course for future reference.

Just as importantly, the functionality was linked in with a set of reports and a logical administrative processes that made sure that development needs did not fall by the wayside.

For instance, this report provided a list of all development needs that were waiting for a course to be identified:

Here, a list of the number of places that needed to be booked on a particular course:

In addition, individual Staff Development Records could be produced:

And a range of expenditure analyses, such as this one by department: