Mark Levine – head of BCL Legal’s in-house team – on why the firm’s free CPD seminar programme for in-house lawyers is so important...

Since BCL Legal was established in 2003 the in-house market has always been key to us and we now boast the largest in-house legal recruitment team in the regions. We believe that this has, in part, been achieved by taking a wider view of our work. We don’t just see ourselves as recruiters who come in and out of in-house teams' lives as and when there is a specific recruitment need, but as partners to our clients where having great long term relationships are vital. We’ve also worked hard to give something back to the in-house community by developing free seminars in partnership with private practice firms and industry bodies right across the UK.

Historically, gaining CPD points came across as a box ticking exercise! We always used to see in-house lawyers at seminars that were of no interest to them but they had to be there to accumulate the required points. At the same time, private practice firms in the main only used to invite their own clients to their events which meant in-house lawyers didn’t get to meet ‘other’ law firms and the firms didn’t have an active way of marketing in a non sales manner to new clients.

Now with over 1,000 CPD points available annually via BCL Legal sponsored events, there is a seminar out there for everyone and at the same time a range of law firms to get them from.

In the past 12 months, BCL Legal has co-ordinated in excess of 50 seminars in cities across the country including Newcastle, Leeds, Nottingham, Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Milton Keynes, Reading and London. They vary from legal specific updates to softer and more self development focussed programmes.

On the flip side, the benefit for our law firm partners is that they get a wide range of potential new clients through the door. I’ve been told on numerous occasions that law firms have picked up work off the back of the talks. It really has become a win-win-win situation for in-house lawyers, law firms and BCL Legal.

In summary, our aim has been to become truly integrated within the in-house legal marketplace and to be seen to add tangible value to it. The CPD seminar programme is just one example which demonstrates that it’s not just talk but it is - in fact - reality.
Details of next year’s seminars will be announced on the BCL Legal website over the coming months.

For a list of last year’s CPD seminars please visit: