Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is important in any professional career to develop the skills and knowledge that will have a positive impact on career progression.
CPD generally involves activities that professionals undertake throughout their career that are not part of their daily tasks. This could include formal training courses to gain professional qualifications, workshops, coaching sessions and e-Learning.
What is CPD?
CPD (Continuing Professional Development) is vital in career progression for professionals. It is a practical form of ongoing learning. Informal and formal methods are used to ensure each individual is learning new skills, developing or keeping up-to-date with their existing the skills, and adding to their knowledge about their industry or profession.
Any type of further training or courses beyond initial training is classed as CPD. CPD can be a self-driven method of learning, based on the individual employee deciding to undertake training or courses that are available and sourcing their own information from a wider range of avenues instead of the employer organising it for them.
However, it can also be a pre-requisite in some organisations. For example, some firms require all their project managers to undertake project management training to achieve a PMP Certification accredited by the Project Management Institute (PMI) and such accreditation includes proof of a certain number of hours of CPD each year.
There are so many types of accessible courses and training available that it can be over-whelming but you must make sure you choose the right one to meet your needs and ensure you progress in your chosen career path.
Continuing Professional Development benefits both employers and employees. For the employer, it is a huge advantage to know that all employees’ skills and knowledge is up-to-date to maintain consistently high standards within the organisation. It can also help identify employees who might be ready for more responsibility and offer them better opportunities and greater responsibilities.
From the employees’ perspective they gain quicker access to those better opportunities and greater responsibilities in the form of timely promotions that ensure a fully motivated workforce. That’s the theory at least…
Does CPD always get you noticed?
Providing an employer knows you are showing your dedication, you are actively involved in progression and care about your personal development and commitment to your current role, then they should consider career progression a joint responsibility.
However, this is not always the case with every employer. Part of a good CPD program should involve regularly seeking feedback from your employer in terms of what you can do to progress your career. That way you can actively seek career progression at the most appropriate time.
Does it always result in a higher salary?
Progression in your current career will usually result in a higher salary but CPD doesn’t necessarily mean just sticking to what you already know. It could push you in a different direction branching you out into a completely different field if that is what you want. Either way, being consistent with professional development will always mean you are progressing. This could, clearly, lead onto better things and new opportunities aside from those available from your current employer.
If you are interested in progressing in your career and want some more information there are a whole host of training websites you can gain information from that offer courses, e-learning, events, workshops and could help you ensure your professional development leads to bigger and better things, no matter what industry you work in.