Let’s say there are two types of newly qualified CIMA members.
TYPE 1: The enthusiastic ACMA CGMA member who is keen to continue on their quest for knowledge.
TYPE 2: The proud yet somewhat relived ACMA CGMA member who wants to focus attention elsewhere.
I fall under the second type, having spent alot of time and effort over the previous four to five years in becoming qualified, I wanted to enjoy the feeling of being qualified without thinking… what’s next?
I wanted to give time back to family, friends, and other interests.
For me, the final (and laborious) hurdle of submitting the CIMA PER to achieve the ACMA, CGMA status confirmed I didn’t want to immediately think about CIMA and CPD (Continuing Professional Development).
Despite it being almost two full years since I qualified, I have yet to record any CPD officially but it’s a process I am looking at doing now, so I thought it would be a good time to dust off the blog and hopefully answer a few questions others might have on the subject.
WHAT IS CPD?
Continuing professional development (CPD) is the process of maintaining and developing your skills, knowledge and experience so that you can meet the requirements of your current role, achieve your career aspirations and meet your professional obligationstaken from CIMA website (https://www.cimaglobal.com/Members/CPD/FAQs/)
Before I go into detail on how I am approaching it, it’s a good time to dispel a few myths around CIMA CPD.
- All CIMA members are required to undertake CPD and keep a record of their development activities.
- CPD can take many forms (work-based learning, conferences, online learning, research, courses etc.)
- There are no mandatory amout of hours or units of CPD you need to cover. CIMA recommend you do as much as you need to remain professionally competent.
- Whilst all CIMA members need to keep their CPD record up to date, you don’t need to submit your CPD record for monitoring until formally requested to do so by CIMA’s CPD monitoring team.
I’d also suggest to visit the CIMA CPD frequently asked questions here, as it should cover any uncertainty you have around what’s needed.
The Pro-Active Approach
In my opinion, you can approach CPD in two ways.
The first being a pro-active approach where you plan ahead and use the CPD cycle to give you structure and plan your development alongside your career aspirations.
Do you want to become a finance leader – if so, think what skills you need to achieve that and plan accordingly.
In most cases, you would have already done something similar with your employer in terms of your career path – you can already leverage on that planning and development and look to record it in your CPD.
I’d also suggest to research specific courses you feel would be beneficial and ask your employer to cover the costs, it’s a win/win situation really. Most companies tend to have a training budget and if it’s relevant to your role there is a high chance the company will pay for the training.
If not, you can always fund it yourself or find other avenues to develop your skills via online learning, free videos, seminars etc.
CPD doesn’t mean spending lots of $$$$$.
The Re-Active Approach
Secondly, you can look back at the last 12 months to see how you’ve developed yourself professionally.
Have you attended relevant webinars, completed projects where you have demonstrated leadership or problem-solving skills, have you attended mentor sessions?
What training courses have you taken part in?
Both approaches have their own merits and I personally I have started to look back over the last 12-18 months to map out what CPD relevant activities I can add to my CIMA CPD record.
What’s more, by looking back I can already see gaps in my own development, there are training courses and specific areas I’d like to develop my own knowledge. I can then incorporate this into my future development and CPD planning as part of the pro-active approach.
Hopefully, this has given CIMA members in a similar situation to myself some food for thought and motivation to start thinking about recording your own CPD.
The next step for me is to now start documenting the CPD I have already undertaken. And planning ahead..
I will continue to blog my progress.