As I explained in my first post Welcome, I recently received my CIPD Associate membership after completing my Learning and Development Practice Diploma. Enclosed with my certificate was a leaflet about Continuous Professional Development (CPD).
Continuous Professional Development seems like the perfect topic to start my development journey.
I work in collaboration with 4 police forces and coincidently the first week in November saw the College of Police celebrate their National CPD week.
Throughout the month I have been sharing articles encouraging fellow professionals to review and reflect on their CPD.
According to Job.AC.uk:
“CPD refers to the process of tracking and documenting the skills, knowledge and experience that you gain both formally and informally as you work, beyond any initial training. It’s a record of what you experience, learn and then apply”
Professional bodies have a code of conduct which members are expected to follow, contained within those codes are normally statements such as;
- Use all information, training, equipment and management support you are provided with to keep yourself up to date on your role and responsibilities. (College of Policing – Code of Ethics)
- Maintain professional knowledge and competence. (CIPD, Code of Professional Conduct)
CPD is essential to meet these standards but also to remain up to date in ever changing work environments.
Depending on the organisation you work for CPD events maybe organised and the subject chosen to meet business objectives. You may have to co-ordinate these activities yourself and complete your own analysis as to where development is required, or you may find, like me, you just want to develop and expand your knowledge.
As the professional body for policing, the College of Policing have developed CPD frameworks, toolkits and templates to assist members maintain and enhance the policing profession with their CPD activities. The College’s CPD model aims to illustrate the four key areas that should be taken into account when considering personal development needs.
Although this has been designed for policing professionals the model can be applied to any individual regardless of their industry. The model’s aim is to empower you to take ownership of your professional development and to support you to take personal responsibility for driving your development forward.
- Individual: You are at the heart of any CPD. This enables you to personalise your development. You should ensure your CPD is relevant to your existing knowledge and skills as well as your development ambitions.
- National: working with key stakeholders to identify national CPD profiles. These will be relevant to everyone working within that industry and will include topics linked to new laws or regulations, supporting professional bodies, promoting industry change.
- Role: your organisation will identify role-specific CPD profiles for every role within the business. These aim to support you with maintaining and enhancing your competence in that role.
- Local: This component of the model represents CPD which has been determined by local demand. This could include activities identified in your local branch or region. It could be in relation to targeting a particular area of business or a current challenge, such as introducing a new IT system that requires the upskilling of all staff.
A CPD activity is any activity which maintains or develops knowledge and skills.
A common misconception of learning is that you have to attend a course, which isn’t always the most cost effective solution. There are a wide range of activities where you can develop your skills, some do include formal training events. Others can be informal, unplanned and spontaneous. Tasks that you complete as part of your job can also count towards CPD.
As CPD is bespoke to you, you can select the method which works best for you and suits your learning styles.
Once you have started looking at CPD you will find the cycle never stops.
When a development need has been identified its time to plan your activities.
CPD can benefit you by;
- Building your confidence and credibility,
- Enabling you to showcase your achievements,
- Assisting you to achieve your career goals by giving your development activities focus,
- Helping you to respond to the changing demands by continually updating your knowledge, skills and experience,
- Keeping track of your development and seeing your personal progression,
- Enabling you to reflect on your learning and identify areas of development and potential.