What is CPD and why is it so important?

What is CPD and why is it so important?

Posted on May 13, 2015

What is CPD and why is it so important?

CPD, or ‘Continuing Professional Development’ as it is fully known, is a system for tracking and recording the learning, skills and knowledge you’re gaining as you work. You may have heard of it as  'lifelong learning', but these days we’re calling it CPD -  and it covers all types of learning:


  • formal and structured -  that’s back to the classroom, or if you’re lucky, a course at a  swanky hotel with bowls of boiled sweets, your own folder and pen, and proper chocolate biscuits
  • informal – for those who like it casual. Discussion groups, workshops,  attending a talk or just you curled up with a good book or academic journal
  • active – no, not quite disco dance classes,  but basically learning something by doing it. Knitting or skipping are good examples, but probably won’t add much to your career prospects
  • reflective – simply experiencing something doesn’t mean that we learn it – no,  we need to reflect on it, and think about how we can use it to be better at what we do
  • self-directed learning… can be  any form of learning  but the point is, you get to choose – what you want to learn and how you want to learn it; you even get to set your own goals


CPD is commonly used in all industries, academic institutions, health settings, public organisations and businesses. Most professionals are expected to undertake a minimum of between 30 to 40 hours CPD each year.

You’ll receive recognition for any form of CPD-certified skills building or training you complete that has a defined points system.  Look out for the logos (below) to check it counts. Typically, you are awarded one CPD ‘point’ for each hour of professional development you complete, and it’s your responsibility to keep a record of the CPD points you’ve earned each year.


So why is CPD so important?

It may sound like a cliché, but it’s all about staying on top of your game – keep it relevant, keep it current, and most importantly, keep on learning. Make use of what others have learned, enhance your skills or broaden your knowledge – it’ll make you better at your job, win you more badges on LinkedIn, and strengthen your professional credibility.

Sounds great, eh?

However, one thing to bear in mind before you enrol yourself at flying school or sign up for flower arranging, or brass rubbing, or Morris dancing classes, it only counts as CPD if is relevant to your role or industry, or is part of the range of mandatory training most of us have to do – in health & safety, equality and diversity, child protection, fire safety or data protection, for example. Of course, once you’ve got your forty points, you can indulge in as much personal development as you wish... Sticks and bells ready? Now skip, skip, skip…

Look out for these logos to know you’re covered:

CPD logos

And guess what, all flick courses are fully CPD certified – so what are you waiting for? Drop us a note here and we can offer you a live demo or free trial! So go on, get cracking– and don’t forget to log your completions (and keep the learning relevant)!


If you would like to find out more about our CPD certified training courses click here.


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