Continual Personal Development
December 4, 2023 - December 4, 2023
Get an industry insight to CPD…
What is CPD?
CPD is a combination of approaches, ideas and techniques that will help you manage your own learning and growth. The focus of CPD is firmly on results – the benefits that professional development can bring you in the real world. Perhaps the most important message is that one size doesn’t fit all. Wherever you are in your career now, and whatever you want to achieve, your CPD should be exactly that: yours.
What is the process?
CPD isn’t a fixed process, although we do lay down certain basic processes. Fundamentally, it’s a question of setting yourself objectives for development and then charting your progress towards achieving them. It’s about where you want to be, and how you plan to get there. Our approach is based on reflection that focuses on outcomes and results, rather than ’time spent’ or ’things done’.
Is it time consuming?
We’re not concerned with how much time you spend on training courses or how many boxes you tick on a form. CPD is about capturing useful experiences and assessing the practical benefits of what you have learned. There is one decisive question that you should ask yourself to evaluate every piece of learning: what can you do now that you couldn’t do before? Similarly, when you record your CPD, it’s the value of the activity that counts. It’s not what you did, but how you can use what you learned.
Why should I keep a CPD record?
As a professional, you have a responsibility to keep your skills and knowledge up to date. CPD helps you turn that accountability into a positive opportunity to identify and achieve your own career objectives.
At least once a year, we recommend you review your learning over the previous 12 months, and set your development objectives for the coming year. Reflecting on the past and planning for the future in this way makes your development more methodical and easier to measure. This is a particularly useful exercise prior to your annual appraisal!
Some people find it helpful to write things down in detail, while others record ’insights and learning points’ in their diaries as they go along. This helps them to assess their learning continuously. These records and logs are useful tools for planning and reflection: it would be difficult to review your learning and learning needs yearly without regularly recording in some way your experiences.
What are the benefits of keeping a CPD record?
CPD is an investment that you make in yourself. It’s a way of planning your development that links learning directly to practice. CPD can help you keep your skills up to date, and prepare you for greater responsibilities. It can boost your confidence, strengthen your professional credibility and help you become more creative in tackling new challenges. CPD makes your working life more interesting and can significantly increase your job satisfaction. It can accelerate your career development and is an important part of upgrading to chartered membership.
How CPD benefits you
The benefits of CPD aren’t just felt when you’re going for promotion or upgrading to Chartered membership. Many employers now value ”˜learning agility’ as a core competency.
- Build confidence and credibility, you can see your progression by tracking your learning.
- Earn more by showcasing your achievements. A handy tool for appraisals.
- Achieve your career goals by focussing on your training and development.
- Cope positively with change by constantly updating your skill set.
- Be more productive and efficient by reflecting on your learning and highlighting gaps in your knowledge and experience.
How CPD benefits your organisation
As organisations shift the responsibility for personal development back to the individual, the ability and insight to manage your own professional growth is seen as a key strength.
- Helps maximise staff potential by linking learning to actions and theory to practice.
- Helps HR professionals to set SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound) objectives, for training activity to be more closely linked to business needs.
- Promotes staff development. This leads to better staff morale and a motivated workforce helps give a positive image/brand to organisations.
- Adds-value, by reflecting it will help staff to consciously apply learning to their role and the organisation’s development.
- Linking to appraisals. This is a good tool to help employees focus their achievements throughout the year.
What do I need to do?
How do I get started?
We recommend you review your learning over the previous 12 months, and set your development objectives for the coming year. Reflecting on the past and planning for the future in this way makes your development more methodical and easier to measure. You may already be doing this as part of your development review with an employer.
There is a set of questions we use when asking you to provide evidence of your CPD. Answering these will help you explore the pattern of your past and planned learning, with the emphasis firmly on the impact of that learning.
|Last year||Next year|
|What were the three most important things you learned last year? How did you learn them?||How do you identify your learning and development needs?|
|What value did you add (to your organisation, clients or colleagues) through professional development?||What are your three main development objectives and how will you achieve them?|
|What were the tangible outcomes of your professional development in the last 12 months?||What differences do you plan to make (to your role, organisation, clients or colleagues?)|
|Has anyone else gained from your professional development? How?||When will you next review your professional development needs?|