What are Continuing Professional Development (CPD Points)?
17 Aug, 2021

Take a moment to consider where you were professionally some years back or what your profession looked like when you first entered the workforce. Irrespective of the time period passed or industry in which you operate, chances are that you’ve experienced significant change – as a professional, to how you work, within workplace cultures, systems and with the technology you use, to name a few.

Change as we know is constant. In the rapidly-evolving workplace, professional growth is imperative not only to keep progressing with career ambitions, but also to sustain present-day skillset relevancy. Continuing Professional Development  programmes are among the best options, in this regard, to stay ahead of the curve and achieve greater success in one’s professional journey.

What is CPD?

The acronym CPD stands for Continuing Professional Development. It refers to the process of tracking and documenting training hours and skills, knowledge and the experience one acquires beyond on-job-training received at places of employment. This includes:

Formal CPD – which pertain to active and structured learning done outside a company, namely via online and offline training programmes like those offered by SafetyCloud, workshops, lectures and learning-focused seminars; and

Informal CPD – professional development activities carried out without a structured syllabus. These are usually embarked on at one’s discretion, such as studying publications, case studies and listening to industry-relevant podcasts.

All CPD activities undertaken successfully, which are recognised by accredited industry-specific regulatory bodies, earn professionals CPD points. These points assign value to continual personal development endeavours undertaken, with the number of CPD points earned being a clear way to demonstrate the time invested in your professional training – to your current employer, job recruiters and hiring managers. They are important for career progression.

Why do I need CPD points?  

Certain professions have long histories of requiring regular evidence of CPD compliance if members are to retain their designations and professional licenses within their profession or industry.  This is done to maintain and update competence among professionals so that public interest is always protected and promoted. In so doing, the best quality service offered to the public at all times is ensured.

Financial Services, Banking, Accountancy, Law, Medicine and the different branches of Engineering are just some of the industries that require verifiable evidentiary records of a professional’s CPD points earned.

CPD points are calculated based on the time taken to complete a course, however, it is important to note that CPD point tallying differs across industries, as do their validity periods. For instance, one industry may equate one hour to one CPD point whereas another considers five hours equal one CPD point.  In the same breath, some regulatory bodies may require a professional to earn 30 CPD points within a year, whereas another industry may require 50 CPD points within a 24-month period. Thus it is essential to keep abreast of your CPD point requirements and expectations, and keeping a record of points earned in a logbook.

How CPD is linked to career and professional development

The benefits of CPD can be seen from two perspectives – that of the employee and that of the employer. Those employees/professionals who undertake a CPD-accredited course, like those offered by SafetyCloud, can prosper from a multitude of benefits, such as:

  • Improved skills and competencies within a current role
  • Opportunities for career progression
  • Help in pay rise negotiations
  • Up-to-date knowledge and skills
  • Credibility inability
  • Showcasing achievements through a recognised qualification
  • Developing a commitment to lifelong learning

For employers, continuous change can become onerous and difficult when in-place resources are incapable of keeping employee skills on par with ever-changing practices within the landscape of their industry. CPD courses thus help employers to:

  • Maintain legal and regulatory obligations for various compliances in certain fields
  • Equip employees with the tools to cope positively with change
  • Provide flexible training schedules based on employees’ timetables and deliverables
  • Facilitate the achievement of business goals better
  • Ensure that company standards are maintained and/or elevated
  • Ensure that knowledge is translated into best practice
  • Enable knowledge sharing across all levels of the business, thus keeping all employees skills on par with their counterparts in other organisations
  • Lower staff turnovers through skills advancement
  • Build a modern, skilled group of employees who can drive the business to success

Laws change, regulations get updated and industries evolve. As a professional committed to doing the best job they can, maintaining skills-relevancy is essential. It also translates into greater trust between colleagues, knowing that everyone is skilled to maintain best practices.  SafetyCloud has a range of SAIOSH verified courses in place that are CPD compliant that can help employees demonstrate their competencies on the job at required standards and levels of quality, as well as prove an organisation’s proficiency and maintenance of standards during inspector or regulator audits. Get in touch with us today.

 

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