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Industry regulator, the Council for Licensed Conveyancers (CLC), and the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) have jointly produced a market report for conveyancing firms.
The report, titled Conveyancing and property law: a changing landscape, references some of the key areas of change in the sector.
The first noticeable trend is the changing skills landscape, whereby degree apprenticeships are on the increase as more employers, colleges, universities, students and parents are realising their advantages.
With a greater focus on professional apprenticeships, the industry will have easier access to a pool of talent. There is also an emphasis on the general skills requirements of staff in this sector, and the methods by which firms can future-proof their business.
The skills landscape sees new and evolving flexible study methods available for learners, including online and distance learning, reinforced with the recent introduction of the opportunity to become a property lawyer without a university degree. Law firms are progressing in order to meet these changes in the sector. For example, My Home Move is a UK law firm on the Register of Apprenticeship Training Providers and has the ability to employ apprentices, as well as deliver professional qualifications in-house.
Furthermore, digital transformation is set to shake up the sector as advances in technology have the potential to overhaul the home buying process. The rise of blockchain technology will undoubtedly lead to faster and more secure transactions within the industry. This is likely to be of significant value within the conveyancing and property sector, where there are multiple elements to a transaction. In addition, the development of new mobile applications and online portals will simplify the process by facilitating improved communication, an on-demand service and easy instant access to relevant documents (IRN Research 2018).
The report compiled by CLC and SQA allows conveyancing law firms to reflect on how these current issues may affect their business, and more importantly, what can be done to plan accordingly.
The full market report is available at: https://pages.sqa.org.uk/marketreport