CPD – groan, do I really have to?

Written by Dave Robson on Tuesday March 15, 2016

Come on, admit it, we’ve all thought this at some point.

It’s getting towards the end of the year and your Manager or HR team are checking your records. You’re supposed to do 35 hours (or thereabouts). Some can be structured, some unstructured. Does that day spent learning how to make PowerPoints more engaging count? When was it? Oh, if only you’d written it down at the time!

You did an ICA Specialist certificate. You know that counts. But how about the wider reading you did about the recent OFAC implications and changes to Iran sanctions? You did it because it was interesting. Does that count…? Maybe you can claim 2 hours for it!

Let’s take a step back

If this is how CPD has worked for you (and I’ll concede I am speaking from personal experience here too) then actually, it’s gone wrong somewhere.

What is the point of CPD? We sometimes lose sight of this, but the clue is in the title: Continuous Professional Development. Here’s the definition from the CIPD:

‘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.’

The moral of the story (as with most of Regulatory & Financial Crime Compliance) is that it’s not a box ticking exercise. If it is, what really is the point?

So what should I be doing?

That’s really up to you!

Yes, there will be structures within which you need to do CPD. These might come from your employer, your professional association or membership organisation – but the point isn’t really that you are doing it – it’s that you are doing it

Do you see the difference?

OK, let’s try this another way.

  1. You’ve found the path of least resistance. You’ve snoozed your way through a couple of conferences or webinars that weren’t really relevant to you (or even something you were interested in) but you’ve claimed maximum CPD points in the quickest time you can. Phew. Thank goodness that’s over for another year. You’ve done it.
  2. You look at what constitutes meaningful CPD. You think about how it applies to your role and your own development. What will be interesting, what will be useful, what increases your knowledge and helps take you where you want to go? You look for solutions as issues present themselves. You need to find out more about conduct risk? Then you find some CPD that helps you understand it – and how it might apply to you. Ultimately it’s about your development. By taking this approach you’ve done it.

Where can I go for my CPD?

There are a lot of providers for you to choose from. You can use one or find your own CPD.

But if you are an ICA member, or would like to be one, then you might be interested to know that CPD is a member benefit that ICA is really focussing on. Not for reason (1) detailed above, but for reason (2). ICA has always been about dissemination of knowledge and best practice, as well as the support and development of members.

The new CPD offering from ICA is very much in line with this ethos. As part of your ICA membership you’ll receive access to a wide selection of materials from ICA, ICT (our training provider) and other sources to suit differing levels of seniority.

You’ll find different formats too – whitepapers, videos, podcasts, e-learning; and all across a variety of topics. So there should be something that you’re interested in and which broadens your knowledge.

ICA CPD, as part of the enhanced membership package, will be launched in July.

Find out more about ICA qualifications here

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