Version 8 of the Handbook was published on 1 October 2013. For more information, please click "History" above.
Regulation 16 applies to supervisors, and "you" should be construed accordingly.
Supervisors must be either:
, directors, managers, members or other equivalent status;
experienced legal executives; or
If you supervise a trainee, you must ensure that, over the course of his or her training, the amount and type of work given to the trainee:
adequately covers each skill within the Practice Skills Standards; and
is of an appropriate level and complexity for the trainee.
should ensure that supervisors are adequately trained and capable of fulfilling the role. Supervisors need to:
have expertise in the practice area they are supervising;
understand the training requirements and the Practice Skills Standards;
understand the system of training within the practice;
give guidance, advice and feedback to trainees on their performance;
have the skills to supervise effectively;
be enthusiastic and make time for the trainees they are supervising.
should be given work and tasks that will help them to develop their skills and the supervisor's role is to help them achieve this by:
delegating work at an appropriate level, with an increased level of difficulty over time;
giving clear instructions on what needs to be done, with sufficient background information and sources of research;
monitoring the trainee's workload to ensure that it is not too much or too little;
giving work that requires the trainee to use different skills with a balance of substantive and procedural tasks;
giving regular feedback on the trainee's performance, recognising achievements and ensuring areas that need improvement are discussed; and
ensuring that the trainee keeps a training contract record.
Regulation 6.1(c) requires training establishments to provide close supervision for trainees.
Regulation 15.2(d) requires training principals to ensure that anyone who supervises trainees has the appropriate legal knowledge and supervisory experience or training to perform the role effectively. The aim of such supervision is to achieve compliance with regulation 10.1.
In order for the supervisory role to be performed effectively, supervisors must be allocated adequate time and resources, and must have a sound understanding both of the training requirements and of all that is expected of them as supervisors.
Typical supervisors' responsibilities which support compliance with regulation 16 are to:
allocate work and tasks of an appropriate level, gradually increasing the level and the complexity of the work over time, while encouraging the trainee to suggest solutions independently;
provide a balance between substantive and procedural tasks that - as a whole - demand the use of a broad range of skills;
provide clear instructions and ensure that they have been understood;
offer advice and guidance on appropriate research methods and materials along with sufficient information and factual background about a case or matter;
set a realistic time-scale for work to be completed and answer questions as they arise, within a supportive environment that does not deter the trainee from asking questions in the future;
monitor the trainee's workload to ensure they have a sufficient but not excessive amount of work;
ensure that the trainee maintains an up-to-date training contract record that identifies the work they have performed and the skills they have deployed;
review the training contract record regularly to ensure that an appropriate balance of work and skills is struck, and to ensure that the trainee is undertaking work of a breadth and depth sufficient to meet the requirements of regulation 10.1 and the Practice Skills Standards;
give regular feedback to the trainee regarding their performance, recognising achievements and improvements, and constructively addressing areas that require further effort;
conduct or participate in formal appraisals of the trainee; and
provide an environment that encourages the trainee to take responsibility for his or her own development.