No matter what industry you work in, things change. It really is that simple. Continued professional development, often referred to as CPD, is the best way to keep up, stay in touch and ensure you are at the top of your game or primed to push that glass ceiling and move higher. So, let’s have a closer look at the benefits of CPD and why it counts no matter what you do.
Many industries have a governing body that assures customers that registered tradespeople have achieved specific competencies and work to predefined standards. So, if, for example, you were an electrician, anyone looking to update and enhance their understanding of the IEE Wiring Regulations would undertake the latest courses as part of their CPD. It shows commitment and provides a higher level of employability, whether by an employer or by members of the public if you operate as a sole trader.
Everything changes over time; for example, in surgery, laparoscopic techniques replace open surgeries to give patients a faster recovery time. Surgeons will have been taught the latest styles in medical school, but ten years later, best practices could well have changed. This is one of the reasons why CPD is mandated in the medical profession as they are constantly seeking to add new and better ways of providing patient care.
If you are in a role that does not mandate CPD, you should still seek out new courses in your chosen area. Employers see the difference between ‘the worker’ who turns up and performs their job effectively but with little interest and ‘the professional’ who makes every effort to go above and beyond to ensure they provide the best service possible to the company and role. CPD shows you want to be effective and stay at the top of your game.
Having the same role for any period can cause an employee to become stale and disinterested. However, when most people choose a career, they do so because they have an interest and passion for their field. CPD is an excellent way to ensure that you don’t lose your spark and remain interested in the work. As well as ensuring you perform to the best of your ability, CPD also gives insight into other aspects of your role, which in turn may inspire you to push for career advancement or lead you to move slightly to realign with a new area that you discovered while working through your CPD.
Benefits the whole profession
When everyone subscribes to CPD, the whole industry benefits for all of the reasons above, so it is little wonder that many professional governing bodies are mandating a certain amount of CPD time for everyone in the field. It gives anyone who interacts with the profession confidence and reassurance about the skills of their members. You also have an excellent opportunity to network with those at the cutting edge of developments. Many areas offer online learning, which makes it easy to access and gives you an easy way to evidence your CPD for employers.