As insurance professionals, most of us are required to complete continuing professional development under Central Bank regulations. This is not exclusive to insurance or financial services professionals – engineers, healthcare workers, plumbers, lawyers, teachers and beyond, all complete various forms of continuing professional development to keep their skills and knowledge up-to-date.
This shouldn’t be seen a simple box-ticking exercise, designed to meet the requirements of Central Bank Codes. Its importance reaches far beyond compliance, allowing you to stay in tune with relevant industry updates, develop your knowledge and ultimately, to protect your customers.
Here are our 5 reasons why you shouldn’t think of CPD as all about compliance.
1. It is a vital component of your career development
In the last number of years, we have seen a shift in attitudes when it comes to CPD. Once seen as something of a nuisance, we’ve noticed from chatting with members that they are now placing more value on the content they complete, viewing it as a vital and valuable part of their career development.
CPD allows you to develop your key technical skills by learning from the top experts in the industry. As an added benefit, if you attend face to face lectures, you’ll get the opportunity to develop a key soft skill imperative to your career advancement: networking.
2. The content is transferable to your day-to-day job
Transferability of content is something that we at The Insurance Institute always keep in mind when developing our face to face lectures and online modules. It is hugely important that you can take away some key learnings from the activities you complete and apply it to your job. That’s why we work with industry to ensure that our content is relevant and valuable to you, so you don’t see your annual requirement as a chore.
3. You can complete it in your own time, at your own pace
The nature of CPD is that it is ‘continuing’, meaning it is not advisable to leave completing your annual requirement until the last weeks in December. If you do, it will become a burden, you’ll put yourself under immense pressure and you won’t extract the value from the content you complete.
Face to face lectures take place throughout the year, both before work and at lunchtime, allowing you to fit an hour or two into your schedule each month. In addition, e-learning modules allow you to complete hours in your own time, at your own pace.
4. It helps to protect your customers
A company with competent and qualified staff is a far more attractive prospect for customers and is more likely to gain and retain business. Customers can rest assured that the people they are dealing with are giving the correct advice and selling the most suitable products. We are an industry dedicated to protecting people, so the skills and knowledge gained from CPD helps to protect both our customers and the integrity of our sector.
5. It adds to your value
Your qualifications and CPD are a mark of professionalism and commitment to lifelong learning. We’ve identified that having qualified and competent staff is a top priority for companies, and one of the best ways to guarantee that competencies are kept up-to-date is through CPD.
Even those with the most advanced qualifications need to keep informed of new trends and products, as well as external factors that the industry needs to be aware of. These elements are constantly changing, so it’s important for us all to remain in the loop and build on what we’ve learned from our textbooks.
Start as you mean to go on. Make a plan of the content you’ll complete throughout the year, including face to face and online.
E-learning modules can be accessed in iiiConnect in the Member Area.
Keep an eye out for our Summer and Winter CPD face-to-face schedules on our website!