The following definition can be applied to CPD.
“CPD is the means by which members of professional associations maintain, improve, and broaden their knowledge and skills and develop the personal qualities required in their professional lives.”
Benefits of Continuing Professional Development(CPD)
The term CPD is being used both locally and abroad for the ongoing self-development of professionals. In effect CPD requires that professionals undertake learning activities that develop and maintain capabilities to perform competently within the professional environments.
The corporate and financial sector look at the members of any professional body with an expectation for updated knowledge and skills and will not accept any member of a professional body that does not conform to some form of CPD. Members of the professional associations thus have a professional duty to develop the skill and knowledge base for themselves.
Planning, doing and recording your CPD will allow you to:
- Provide evidence of your commitment within your profession and of your continuing competence
- Have an excellent reference document for both updating your own CV and in providing a base of future reference of topics you have studied
- Hold a useful aid for career development and allow you to plan, record and review your relevant activities
- Have an awareness of your shortcomings and a strategy to overcome them
- Exploit change and not be driven by it
- Identify your skills and assist others in acquiring similar skills
The professional association in particular and the profession in general will benefit by having:
- Efficient and skilled members;
- Motivation to develop and learn increases members performance which contributes to business objectives of the organizations they are working for;
- Create the image of a progressive and committed organization that maintains development following professional qualifications;
- Members who are able to adapt more readily to changing demands within their profession.
The market will benefit from:
- The assurance that the professionals are maintaining skills and developing new skills whilst also ensuring that their skills are passed to other members
- Establish a quality benchmark of the competence of all members.
CPD is about improving your own performance and those of others at work, enhancing your career prospects, increasing your capacity for learning and being more efficient and confident when faced with challenges.
Your CPD activities would include:
- Attending training courses, seminars, workshops and conferences
- Serving on committees and technical committees of your professional association
- Undertaking distance and open learning packages and qualification
- Technical authorship of papers, teaching and facilitating or preparing of lectures for organized events.
- The following activities are included in the accredited CPD activities.
- Teaching relevant professional or degree courses
- Research paper published in a peer reviewed journal
- Watching videos/CDs of ICPAP’s CPD programmers
- Self-certified readings (interim arrangement).
Following three exemptions are available to students:
- Sick or incapacitated so that he/she cannot perform normal work
- Retired from whole time business
- Career breaks.
Continuing Professional Development
CPD, on its own, does not provide assurance that all members will provide high quality professional service all the time. Doing so involves more than maintaining professional competence; it involves applying knowledge with professional judgment and an objective attitude. Also, there cannot be assurance that every person who participates in a CPD program will obtain the full benefits of that program, because of variances in individual commitment and capacity to learn. Nevertheless, it is certain that members who are not up-to-date on current technical and general knowledge pertinent to their work will not be able to provide professional services competently. Therefore, despite the inherent limitations of any CPD program, a CPD requirement is important in preserving the standard of the profession and also in maintaining public confidence.
It is the responsibility of the individual member to develop and maintain professional competence necessary to provide high quality services to clients, employers and other stakeholders. Members are free to choose from the opportunities both locally and internationally available, as approved by the CPD Committee, to fulfill their relevant CPD needs.
This Directive prescribes that members:
Foster a commitment to lifelong learning establish benchmarks for developing and maintaining the professional competence necessary to protect the public interest and monitor and enforce the continuing development and maintenance of professional competence.
CPD can be achieved by at least three different approaches:
- In-put based approaches by establishing a set amount of learning activity that is considered appropriate to develop and maintain competence.
- Out-put based approaches by requiring professional accountants to demonstrate, by way of outcomes, that they develop and maintain professional competence.
- Combination approaches by effectively and efficiently combining elements of the input and output based approaches, setting the amount of learning activity required and measuring the outcomes achieved.
- The Institute has adopted a combination approach before moving towards a comprehensive output-based system.
- The CPD Committee of the Institute has the responsibility for the establishment of directive and overall coordination of CPD activities for its members in Pakistan & abroad.
- Branch Councils would coordinate with the CPD Committee in execution of CPD activities.