Rutherford Cross Consultant, Gillian O’Neil, discusses the importance of Continuous Professional Development (CPD) and some key benefits to employees and employers in her blog below.
CPD is the term used to describe the learning activities professionals engage in to develop and enhance their abilities. CPD is a holistic approach towards the enhancement of personal skills and proficiency throughout a professional’s career. If you have an accounting or finance professional qualification, it’s likely that you’re required to complete a CPD cycle on an annual basis. However, even if this is not a requirement for you, and no matter what field you work in, carrying out regular CPD will benefit your career massively in the long run.
Key Benefits of CPD
CPD can be conducted through various different means; work-based learning, external courses, online courses, seminars, conferences, webinars, research, mentorships and secondments etc. Some key benefits include:
- Keeping your skills and knowledge up to date
- Preparing you for greater responsibilities
- Boosting your confidence
- Strengthening your professional credibility
- Helping you become more creative in tackling new challenges
- Enhancing your employability for the future
As an employer, offering CPD to your employees is extremely beneficial in many ways. Not only will it ensure high standards throughout the business and contribute positively to business success, it also helps to boost employee productivity by helping individuals become more efficient in their roles and also more motivated. Employee retention can also be improved due to employees feeling more valued and loyal to the company.
Personally, I have always valued my own development, inside and outside of the workplace. When I first entered into recruitment, after making a career change in March 2022, I experienced these benefits first hand. Since my initial onboarding training sessions, I have felt fully supported by colleagues, particularly those who have been with the business longer term, who truly lead by example and also act as mentors. Not only do they help and advise the newer consultants within the business, they also run regular ‘Skills Matters’ sessions for all the team. Each session explores a different topic with the purpose of expanding our knowledge and promoting discussion / brainstorming amongst colleagues. I always come away from the sessions with improved confidence on the topic covered, and a new way of thinking or approaching things after the brainstorming sessions and open discussions.
CPD at Livingston James Group
At the start of this year, we also launched the ‘Livingston James Knowledge Academy’. The LJ Knowledge Academy is designed to promote learning and self-development outside of the office which will in turn help us to become more effective in our roles. For the first quarter of the LJ Learning Academy, we were provided with online videos to watch on ‘A Leader’s Character’. This aimed to give us an understanding of different personality types, how they are formed from childhood roots, how to identify the types, what their positive and negative traits are, how best to lead, and how to provide feedback to them. After watching the videos, on a weekly basis we would run a session to discuss that week’s topic and how we could relate it to ourselves, as well as the colleagues, candidates and clients who we work with. I found this learning series promoted ‘outside of the box’ thinking for me, and I thought it was a very interesting topic for us to explore.
My experience so far, feeling supported through my learning and development at Livingston James Group, has been an extremely positive one. Throughout my time with the business, I have already experienced work-based learning, mentorship, seminars, online courses and much more, so I can definitely agree with all of the benefits listed above. Therefore, I would encourage employers to think about what they can offer their employees to further their learning and development, both inside and outside the workplace.
This year for quarter two, we have just started reading ‘Start With Why’ by Simon Sinek and we will continue to follow a similar format for colleague discussion around how to implement the learnings from it going forward. I am so thankful for these opportunities that we are given at Livingston James Group and I am very much looking forward to seeing what the next chapter brings…
If you are looking for guidance around career progression, or you are looking for a new finance role or support with your organisation’s finance requirements, please reach out to Gillian O’Neil for a confidential discussion.
Email: [email protected]
Mob: 07432 482 882