Crisis decision-making and command training for police

Recent major incidents such as the Manchester Arena bombing and the associated inquiry have highlighted that police forces have an incident command skills gap in their chain of command – particularly for junior and frontline officers who do not usually receive command and control training beyond their recruitment and probationary period.

While specialist commanders receive bespoke, accredited incident command training, similar training for average response inspectors or critical incident managers does not exist in most forces – particularly not with a holistic approach to incident command training that would make them adequately prepared and skilled to face a wide range of incidents. In the Manchester Arena Inquiry recommendations, emphasis was placed on developing the command competencies of any officer who could be expected to take on a command role during a spontaneous Major Incident, and on creating the necessary nationally accredited courses for this purpose.

The Inquiry Chairman also stressed that multi-agency cooperation was paramount to making proper risk assessment and getting victims the best help in the best way, but also that “it is necessary to ensure that JESIP works in practice and not just in theory. […] More training, more practice, and the right sort of practice, are needed. Lessons need to be learned when things go wrong in exercises or in a real emergency, and change implemented as a result. Most importantly, individual emergency services must not operate alone.”

It is therefore clear that there is a growing need for effective training programmes suitable for all levels of command that will equip officers with adequate command and control skills, and, not least, the confidence they need to make assertive, effective and safe decisions when facing extreme situations. High-fidelity training, such as simulation training, was mentioned in the Manchester Arena Inquiry recommendations as a possible answer for this.

The case for developing suitable command and control training for all levels of police was presented by Dr Katherine Lamb (Company Director at K Lamb Associates) and Costi Karayannis (CEO of LearnPro Group) in a talk on the topic “Incident Command & crisis decision-making: How can we prepare the force of the future for the unexpected?” during the 2023 Emergency Services Show in Birmingham. Dr Katherine Lamb has more than 15 years of experience developing and delivering command training for UK Fire & Rescue Services and believes many of the processes can be applied in the Police sector as well. It starts with working out what learning outcomes you are trying to achieve through training, but she explains that if the Police sector wants to develop the right people with the right capabilities, more effort is required than implementing a standard set of courses delivering ‘incident solving blueprints’.

Dr Katherine Lamb

“Create thinking individuals”

Dr Katherine Lamb emphasized the importance of going beyond the standard training and assessment regime and instead creating what she calls “thinking individuals” – incident commanders who continuously develop their decision-making behaviours rather than focusing solely on skill-building for specific incident types, and who can look holistically at the incident they are facing to determine the right course of action at the right time, rather than taking a tick-box approach to commanding the incident.

She says, “To be able to empower people to make decisions flexibly during any incident response, you need to have thinking individuals who can apply the concepts and philosophies they have been taught, but who have the latitude to make decisions that flex within the paradigm of the incident they are facing. We do this by focusing on decision-making behaviours rather than specific competencies.”

She acknowledges that this is no easy task, and stresses that in order to ensure a successful implementation of such a new approach, it has to be a holistic solution driven from the top of the organisation to all corners of the force to ensure a unified approach.

“It’s important that there’s a holistic philosophy to deliver this kind of training,” she says. “You have to embed it from the bottom all the way up to the top. If you just focus on training or assessing, you end up with a disjointed philosophy. It has to run all the way through. You have to start teaching your initial recruits this philosophy and behaviour, and, importantly, the most senior officers of your organisation have to be on the same page. Otherwise, you will not have the synergy you need to ensure that you end up in the right place.”

Some of her key points for ensuring successful implementation are:

  • Implementing new requirements for continuous training and assessment on all levels;
  • Clear communication of the what, the why and the how, as well as the benefits of the changes being made;
  • Clear, measurable learning objectives and curriculum for all levels; and
  • Gathering extensive data throughout the process to support, diversify and evolve their efforts, and to identify future training needs.

Frontrunners: Devon & Cornwall Police

Devon & Cornwall Police are setting a pioneering example of how command and control training can be implemented effectively using a mixed-method approach. They have developed a 3-day training course for their tactical (silver) and operational (bronze) level officers. Two of the days focus on the theory behind incident command training, including JESIP and JDM, while the last day is spent running virtual reality command scenarios using the XVR Simulation platform.

The course is delivered by experienced instructors and commanders who can contextualise the theoretical concepts for the participants with real-life experiences, offering clear examples of how certain procedures or dilemmas could play out in reality. Participants then test their understanding and absorption of the learned material by running virtual reality scenarios developed specifically for this purpose. Using a head-mounted display, a participant is dropped into an incident scenario in the role of incident commander, while the instructors play the roles of fellow officers, members of the public and/or colleagues from other agencies. Meanwhile, the other participants observe them and learn from their interactions. Scenarios end with a debrief to discuss what went well and what can be improved.

The results of the course have so far been very good. To quantify the effectiveness of the course, the participants were asked to rate their confidence in their command skills on a scale of 1-10 before and after the training. The average confidence score was just under 6/10 before the training. After completing the command training course, confidence rates had increased to an average of above 9 (see below).

Image courtesy of Devon & Cornwall Police.

Participant feedback was also very enthusiastic about the level of immersion offered by the VR scenarios, with some stating that they felt they learned more from this method of delivery than from previous training sessions they had attended. The flexibility of the system allows participants to see the direct consequences of their decisions (or indecision) in real-time, and similarly, instructors can give feedback directly to maximise learning absorption. More than half of the participants requested more VR training in future courses, and Devon & Cornwall Police are looking into the options for expanding their efforts, also into multi-agency exercises.

Devon & Cornwall Police are demonstrating how to use virtual reality training successfully in developing the command skills of their officers. While VR will never replace essential, real-life training, it has been proven to be a valuable tool to help prepare first responders across the emergency services spectrum to handle increasingly complex incidents and to, ultimately, save lives.

If you are interested in learning more about how virtual reality training can be applied to police force training and assessment, please get in touch at

To learn more about Dr. Katherine Lamb and her work, visit


LearnPro Group welcomes Katie Wright as Group Sales Director and Mark Truby as Chief Financial Officer

LearnPro Group is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Katie Wright as the new Group Sales Director and Mark Truby as the new Group Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Katie will have responsibility for the Group’s sales activities, and Mark will be responsible for the Group’s financial strategy. They will both sit on the LearnPro Group Senior Leadership Team.

Katie is an experienced sales professional with more than a decade of experience in both start-up and established businesses providing digital business solutions in the UK public sector. She has held several senior sales positions in the past, most recently in Placecube, a UK digital services provider, and Capita, a leading business process services provider.

Mark has extensive experience in various global businesses in the Tech sector, with a proven track record in helping businesses grow through developing and integrating the finance team and implementing and strengthening corporate financial strategy. Previously, he worked with The Channel Company (formerly bChannels) for 9 years and has had experience in board positions across a number of scale-up businesses.

Katie Wright, Sales Director, says: “There are lots of exciting challenges to take on at LearnPro Group, and I’m looking forward to developing the sales strategy so we can keep building our business and support organisations that deliver vital public services.”

Mark Truby, CFO, says: “It’s an exciting time to join the LearnPro Group as it grows and affirms its place in the market of software solutions for the public and emergency services sector. I look forward to supporting my new colleagues in further growing the business together.”

Costi Karayannis, CEO of LearnPro Group, says: “I know Katie to be an incredibly talented and commercially driven professional. Her public sector experience will enrich our business, and I am delighted to see her join us. I’m also very pleased to bring Mark aboard and look forward to working together to build on the Group’s financial position. I have no doubt that his wealth of experience will be an asset to the Group.”

Katie and Mark will take over from Ferry Pak and Espe du Plessis respectively, both of whom have decided to pursue new challenges outside of the Group. We wish to thank them for their commitment and service to LearnPro Group and wish them well in their future careers.

Any questions can be directed to


LearnPro Group exhibiting at Emergency Services Show 2023

LearnPro Group will be exhibiting at the Emergency Services Show on the 19th & 20th of September in Birmingham NEC. Stop by stand J150 for a chat, a demo of our full product suite – or to test your mettle in our VR Game Experience!

Our staff will be on hand to demonstrate our software platforms from all our brands:

  • pdrPro competence management system
  • learnPro LMS
  • XVR Simulation VR training software

Visitors can also try their hand at two VR “games” developed with XVR On Scene, which will introduce some of the new VR functionalities included in this year’s software release. The winner will be the person who completes both games the fastest at the end of the exhibition – the prize is a donation to a charity of their choice.

LearnPro Group will be sharing our stand with The Simulation Centre from Coventry University, a partner of XVR Simulation, who will be demonstrating their use of our incident command virtual reality software for training and assessing emergency services.

We will be stocked up on interesting use cases, enthusiasm and coffee, and we hope to see you at stand J150!


LearnPro Group welcomes Nicola Marsden as Group Marketing & Communications Director

LearnPro Group is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Nicola Marsden as the new Group Marketing & Communications Director. Nicola will sit on the LearnPro Group Senior Leadership team and have responsibility for the Group’s marketing and communication activities.

Nicola is an experienced marketing leader with more than a decade of proven impact in her previous roles in Capita PLC, one of the UK’s leading providers of business process services, having held senior marketing positions most recently in the Education & Learning business.

Nicola Marsden, Marketing & Communications Director, LearnPro Group said, “This is a fantastic opportunity to lead LearnPro Group’s marketing & communications to enhance our strategy and engage with our people, partners and customers. LearnPro Group is deeply proud of its heritage and the impact its suite of e-learning and compliance tools have on society – offering engaging and flexible learning solutions which keep us all safe. With the coming together of the learnPro LMS, pdrPro & XVR Simulation products we are uniquely placed to support our customers and markets.”

Costi Karayannis, CEO, LearnPro Group said: “I know Nicola from our time at Capita PLC and know her to be a talented and enthusiastic marketing leader. She has a strong commercial focus and I have no doubt that she will support the business in delivering against our ambitious growth plans.”

Any questions can be directed to


LearnPro Group welcomes Hannah Brindle as Programme Director

LearnPro Group is pleased to announce the recent appointment of Hannah Brindle as Programme Director. Hannah will be responsible for managing and developing XVR Simulation’s growth opportunities in Singapore. She brings extensive experience to the Group from her previous roles managing similar projects, most recently in Saudi Arabia.

Hannah has a long career in the digital learning and business solutions sectors. She has spent the last 6 years as Managing Director of Virtual College Ltd, a digital learning business that delivers e-learning solutions to industry and the public sector, where she has been employed for over a decade.

“There are some exciting challenges ahead. XVR Simulation is a market leader within virtual reality training for emergency services, and I see a lot of potential for expanding into the Singaporean market,” says Hannah Brindle.

“Hannah will be an asset in developing our business in Singapore, and I’m happy to welcome her to the Group,” says Costi Karayannis, CEO of LearnPro Group.

Any questions can be directed to


LearnPro Group welcomes John Polak as UK Sales Manager

LearnPro Group is pleased to announce the recent appointment of John Polak as new UK Sales Manager. John will support existing pdrPro, learnPro and XVR customers, and develop our business across fire, healthcare, local authority and the wider public sector.

John is an experienced sales executive with a long background in learning management and HR systems in the wider UK public sector. Prior to joining LearnPro Group, he held multiple positions as an account manager and business development manager focussing on digital business solutions.

“LearnPro Group is an interesting player in the market for e-learning and competence management solutions, and I see a lot of potential to build an even stronger customer base,” says John Polak.

“John will be instrumental in developing our business across new and existing sectors and he is a great addition to our Sales team,” says Costi Karayannis, CEO of LearnPro Group.

Any questions can be directed to


New pdrPro module improves Operational Assurance

We are delighted to announce a significant addition to the pdrPro competence and operational management suite: The new Operational Assurance module. This module helps your service remain compliant with National Operational Guidance while recording and sharing good operational practice. All data is synced seamlessly from the pdrPro Core System for easy form pre-population.

To adhere to the fire standards specified by the NFCC, the Operational Assurance module covers every area required to ensure that firefighters stay safe and compliant. Below are some of the most important aspects of the National Operational Guidance that are covered by the module.


Operational Compliance

You can easily collect incident logs, station audits, debriefs, and staff competence records in one location, pinpointing the current level of operational compliance and helping you become or remain compliant.


Operational Training and Development

The module offers a collated overview of all data documenting current competence and future development pathways in pdrPro Core, effortlessly keeping track of your staff’s continuous training and development.


Operational Preparedness

Use the module to document and evidence your station’s operational preparedness, including staff, appliances, and equipment. This will help you ensure that your local resources are up-to date-and well-maintained, further improving efficiency and safety when responding to incidents.


Operational Learning

Keep track of your station’s operational learning using the module’s closed-loop process to report best practices or any areas of concern. Incidents are assessed and recorded, discussed with the relevant stakeholders, and can be shared internally and externally as needed.


The Operational Assurance module is an important addition to the existing framework of the pdrPro and learnPro Core systems. It is a valuable tool that will assist your stations in remaining compliant throughout all levels of command. Make sure that your operations and all operational aspects are properly documented and steadily improving, and contribute to a more efficient method of working.

If you would like to know more about the pdrPro Operational Assurance module, you can download the Operational Assurance Module leaflet. If you have any questions about the Operational Assurance module or pdrPro in general, please reach out to us at


You can also find more information at


Vacancy – Junior Gaming Software Tester

Are you a recently graduated software tester who has an affinity with games but want to work outside the pressure of the games industry? Do you have knowledge of all test activities, from test strategy to test execution? Then we are looking for you! 

We are looking for someone who is an enthusiastic, critical, driven and dedicated individual early in their career who is eager to join our cozy, informal QA team and contribute to the quality of the LearnPro Group products, especially XVR Simulation products.

XVR Simulation, a part of LearnPro group develops serious simulation software for training and educating emergency workers. Our XVR virtual reality simulation platform is globally used in over 50 countries. HERE you can get a sneak preview showcasing the software we make.

Because we are growing fast, we are looking for a Junior gaming software tester who is trained in the testing field or has knowledge of testing activities and who is willing to quickly implement this knowledge for our software to join our QA team.

What we ask:

  • You have a bachelor’s degree (academic level of thinking and working) in the field of computers / IT.
  • You have analytical skills, are accurate and result- and solution- oriented.
  • You have good communicative and collaborative skills.
  • You like to work in a team.
  • You’re willing to signal and act upon any ambiguities and problems that occur in the testing process.
  • You are a certified tester (TMap Next or ISTQB) – or have worked with these methods.
  • You are fluent in English (and ideally Dutch), both verbally and written.

A plus if:

  • you have the knowledge, of, or experience with testing internet solutions.
  • you have the knowledge, of, or experience with automated testing.

What we offer: 

  • A varied and challenging job at a fast-growing international software company.
  • A sociable team and an informal, professional corporate culture.
  • Plenty of room to take responsibility and initiative.
  • Hybrid working opportunity.
  • Contribution towards travel costs.
  • Typical Dutch lunch spread, with fresh fruit and snacks.
  • Foosball and gaming with colleagues during your break!
  • The chance to contribute to an innovative product with which aid workers worldwide train their skills

Working hours: 

  • We’re looking for someone who is available for 40 hours a week to work with our team based in Delft, The Netherlands.


Click here to apply


About the LearnPro Group

LearnPro Group is the global leader in virtual reality and e-learning solutions for the health, fire, police and other emergency services. The combined software suite made up of learnPro, pdrPro and XVR Simulation provides a platform for learning management, authoring, competency reporting and training, including an immersive virtual reality simulation training platform. The suite of products is used by leading public sector institutions to train and manage over 250,000 emergency service and health care staff each year. Visit for more information.


Vacancy – Sales/Account Manager

We are seeking a dynamic and motivated Sales/Account Manager who is eager to join our dynamic international sales team and contribute to the growth of the LearnPro Group. In this role, you will be responsible for managing client relationships with our existing clients and identifying new sales opportunities in our current verticals.

As a Sales/Account Manager, you will be a key contributor to the commercial success of LearnPro Group. You will actively seek out new business opportunities with both new and existing clients, and use your business acumen and leadership qualities to close deals and extend existing agreements.

Overall, we are looking for a highly motivated and organized individual with a commercial mindset to join our Sales team. This is a challenging and high-visibility opportunity that requires commitment, strong leadership qualities, and a positive and motivated attitude to succeed.

As a Sales/Account Manager, your key responsibilities will include:

·       Developing and maintaining a comprehensive knowledge of the company’s products and services.

·       Establishing and cultivating strong relationships with both prospective and existing clients, and        providing exceptional customer service.

·       Upselling and cross-selling products/services to clients in order to maximize revenue potential.

·       Conducting research and actively pursuing new business opportunities with potential clients.

·       Identifying clients’ unique needs and requirements, and providing customized and suitable solutions.

·       Offering comprehensive product/service consultations and expertly guiding clients through the decision-making process.

·       Handling complaints and resolving issues in a timely and efficient manner.

·       Consistently meeting sales/revenue targets, while ensuring client satisfaction.

Who are you:

·       Proven track record as a relationship manager, customer service representative, or in a similar role.

·       Exceptional ability to build and maintain strong client and business relationships.

·       Extensive experience in the Fire Fighting and/or First Response industry.

·       Fluency in Dutch, English, and German.

We offer:

·       Competitive salary

·       Opportunities to learn new skills

·       Join a sociable and enthusiastic team

·       Help sell amazing products that contribute to a safer world

·       Hybrid working is possible

If you are excited about the opportunity to join the LearnPro Group and make a difference, we encourage you to apply.


Click here to apply


About the LearnPro Group

LearnPro Group is the global leader in virtual reality and e-learning solutions for the health, fire, police and other emergency services. The combined software suite made up of learnPro, pdrPro and XVR Simulation provides a platform for learning management, authoring, competency reporting and training, including an immersive virtual reality simulation training platform. The suite of products is used by leading public sector institutions to train and manage over 250,000 emergency service and health care staff each year. Visit for more information.


Vacancy – Technical Product Owner

We are looking for an experienced and capable technical product owner with a systems integration focus to lead the development of a new product stream that will be transformational for the LearnPro Group.

The role will sit between conventional product ownership and systems integration management. We need someone who can hit the ground running to understand a complex area and rapidly develop and document the project requirements before working with various stakeholders to deliver outstanding results. Some of the requirements from this programme will be technical and non-functional so familiarity with systems integrations will be an advantage. Any experience in games development will also be helpful since our core system is a simulation system based on  the Unity games engine.

You will need to run functional workshops and tease out requirements from non-specialists, then document and translate requirements to the level that development teams can understand. In addition, you will create presentations, wireframes and mocked screens as needed – communicating with every part of the business and managing external suppliers. As such, the successful candidate must be self-assured and able to challenge poor UX suggestions from all areas and levels of the organisation, with the CTO and programme steering committee’s backing and support.

Reporting to the CTO and the programme steering group, but supported by the in-house product management team, this role is initially a 1 year contract that we envisage converting to a permanent role if everything works well.

The role will be hybrid with some time in our Delft office and some travel to suppliers and very occasional trips to the programme delivery location in Singapore. The LearnPro Group’s working language is English but the main office is in The Netherlands so fluent Dutch is also a requirement.


  • Act as product owner and product manager for the new programme within the Production Department team
  • Wrangle all documentation containing existing knowledge and map these to the requirements matrix of the programme
  • Document existing technical architecture of the project environment at a high level
  • Map requirements to technical options, using input from stakeholders involving multiple system suppliers
  • Create well-structured information output for the steering committee and stakeholders
  • Run workshops to elicit requirements within the business and produce user stories, personas, wireframes, prototypes, journey maps, presentations and designs as required
  • Quality check development work with assistance from the test team
  • Champion good UX and design across the business

Skills and Experience

  • Graduate with a computer-related or technical degree, preferably in human factors or UX – but ability is more important than degree background
  • 5+ years’ professional experience working as a product owner or product manager
  • Experience with analysing market opportunity, competitive landscape, and customer needs, conducting research as necessary
  • Experience researching, prototyping, designing, testing and building  web products (preferably web and simulation/games)
  • Must be commercially focused and collaborate well with cross-business stakeholders, clients, and development teams to execute the roadmap on time.
  • Technical understanding of integrations between systems (technical use of different API types, sockets, RPC calls)
  • Enough infrastructure knowledge to understand networking implications of chosen solutions
  • Ability to document complex systems in English
  • Ability to work out the best technical path from competing options
  • Supplier negotiation on requirements and design

Personal Attributes

  • Reliable and diligent
  • Confident and able to challenge poor assumptions without condescending
  • Good attention to detail with a focus on good design
  • Willingness to champion good design and mentor others in best practice
  • Fast learner

What we offer

  • Competitive salary
  • Opportunities to learn new skills
  • Join a sociable and enthusiastic team
  • Help develop amazing products that contribute to a safer world
  • Join a company already operating in 45 countries at an exciting time of growth
  • Hybrid working is possible

Apply here

About the LearnPro Group 

LearnPro Group is the global leader in virtual reality and e-learning solutions for the health, fire, police and other emergency services. The combined software suite made up of learnPro, pdrPro and XVR Simulation provides a platform for learning management, authoring, competency reporting and training, including an immersive virtual reality simulation training platform. The suite of products is used by leading public sector institutions to train and manage over 250,000 emergency service and health care staff each year. Visit for more information.

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