What is CPD?
Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the structured vocational learning any professional carries out to keep their knowledge, skills and capabilities up to date. It is learning that shapes and boosts our careers and helps maintain competence when laws, regulations, standards and practice change, or your career path alters course.
Your learning – the CPD activities you undertake each year – can include formal training courses but also many free and easy-to-access opportunities like reading and writing relevant books, reports and articles, webinars, workshops, conferences and site visits, coaching, and anything else which helps you learn and develop.
Planning, tracking and evidencing your learning is simple yet very important – it helps you set goals, find learning activities that will help you achieve them and keep a record of what you have learned.
Do I have to keep a CPD record?
Maintaining an accurate and up-to-date CPD record is a mandatory requirement for all IEMA members with a professional grade (Graduate, Associate, Practitioner, Full and Fellow), and those with a Specialist Registration (Assessor, Auditor etc). This is because each member has to demonstrate that they continue to meet the relevant professional standard after initial assessment for their status to remain valid.
While it is not a requirement for Student and Affiliate members, it is prudent to plan and record all vocational learning, especially if you are aiming to achieve a professional grade in the future, or you are working to meet another career goal. Also, demonstrating a commitment to developing and upholding professional knowledge and competence is part of IEMA's Code of Professional Conduct, which all members must abide by.
If you are not sure whether you are required to maintain a CPD record, please read IEMA’s CPD Policy for further details.
Do I need to log my auditor/EIA/ESOS work to maintain my specialist registration?
Yes. The Auditor, ESOS and EIA registers are practitioner registers, so you need to demonstrate that you continue to practice in the field to maintain your registration. It is a requirement for members holding registration to submit CPD each year.
Why is setting CPD goals important?
Setting learning and development goals is a crucial part of CPD. It helps you establish what you want to achieve so you can undertake learning that will help you get there.
When starting your annual CPD plan, you should think about where you are in your career now, and what you want to achieve over the coming year. Are you aiming to upgrade your membership and therefore need to work on some core competencies? Are you planning to take on new responsibilities at work and need to develop some new skills? Which sections of the IEMA Skills Map do you feel you could strengthen? Thinking these type of considerations will help you plot clear and achievable goals, which in turn will guide what CPD activities you need to do and record over the coming year.
You can also include shorter term objectives, for example, having a chat with your manager about taking on a new responsibility or reading up on some new legislation.
What counts as CPD?
Any activity that boosts your knowledge, understanding, range of skills, ability or influence contributes to your CPD. Some examples include:
- Attending relevant events or conferences or listening to webinars;
- Structured learning from formal training courses;
- Informal and self-directed activities such as reading TRANSFORM magazine, journals, books, and other articles;
- On-the-job learning and practical experience;
- Supporting others to develop, either through formal or informal coaching and mentoring;
- Voluntary activities.
Take a look at the IEMA Benefits Map to find the resources and activities that will help you reach your goals.
How much CPD should I do?
You should aim to log at least 30 hours’ worth of activities every year to keep your knowledge current and your development on track.
Be aware that if you have set yourself some particularly challenging goals, then you may need to log more than 30 hours in order to achieve them. Then again there may be times where it’s appropriate to log less than 30 hours, for example if you are taking a career break, are on parental leave, or if you are on long term sick leave. You can discuss this with our team if any of these situations apply to you.
When do I need to do CPD?
You should carry out learning and development year round, and record it as you go so you can keep on top of the process. However, as IEMA’s CPD year runs from 1st January to 31st December, you should begin each calendar year by setting your goals. From there you should spend around 30 hours over the year doing learning and development activities that support your goals. You should then spend some time at the end of each year reflecting on your learning before you begin again by goal setting in January.
Each quarter, we call in a sample of CPD records from across the Membership. We select a random sample of 2% of each professional membership grade, from Graduate through to Full and Specialist Registers. If you are selected, you will have one month to prepare and submit your CPD record which you can easily download from mycareerpath® .
What happens if I am selected to submit my CPD and I don’t or can’t do it?
If your CPD record is not received after the IEMA Professional Standards team has sent notification and taken reasonable steps to contact the you then this may result in a referral to the Professional Standards Committee. In some cases, it may result in the downgrade of membership to Affiliate.
If I am asked to submit my CPD as part of the sampling, how do I send it?
If you are asked to send in your record, you will be required to submit your CPD record using mycareerpath®.
Other records and forms will be accepted. You will have the option to attach external records within IEMA’s online CPD portal. But you must ensure all four areas listed above are present within your submission. For any areas not covered within your non-IEMA, you can use the mycareerpath® to log additional information.
Details of where your evidence should be sent will be provided when you are informed that you have been selected to submit.
How will my CPD records be assessed?
Our CPD assessors will be looking for clear evidence that all four of the following areas:
- Setting goals to meet your learning and developmental needs;
- Action in the form of a variety of developmental activities, and attainment of 30 hours CPD;
- Evaluation of these completed activities and their impact;
- Overall reflection on the progress made towards achieving the goals.
The Professional Standards team will provide you written feedback detailing the outcome of the review. Within feedback, the CPD Assessor will provide you with insights and suggestions as you move toward completing your goals.
Mandatory submission – what happens if my CPD records are assessed as not having met IEMA requirements?
If your CPD record does not meet IEMA’s requirements, you will be given the opportunity to revise and re-submit your CPD.
Should a second submission still fail to meet IEMA’s requirements, this may result in a referral to the Professional Standards Committee. In some cases, it may result in the downgrade of membership to Affiliate.
How do I set goals and record my CPD?
All IEMA members have free and continual access to our online CPD recording tool, mycareerpath®.
Through mycareerpath®, you can plan your development, assess your current competencies, record and update your log of CPD activities in real time, reflect on the value of each activity and monitor your progress at any time. The portal also helps you to gather evidence against the requirements for IEMA professional membership, or any other goal you are working towards.
How do I access the mycareerpath® portal?
To access the portal, login to MyIEMA using your usual iema.net login details and then locate the button for CPD. You will then automatically navigate to the mycareerpath® portal.
The CPD platform is mobile and tablet friendly so you can access it from wherever you are (as long as you have an internet connection), and even update your CPD activities ‘on the go’.
Is my information secure?
Why does mycareerpath® reference the Engineering Council?
mycareerpath® was developed by the Engineering Council, and IEMA – along with several other professional bodies – has a licence to operate the portal for our members. The Engineering Council do not have access to your data, your CPD record or your log-in.
I hold memberships with more than one body. Do I have to keep a separate IEMA CPD record using the portal?
IEMA will accept CPD submissions in any form as long as your record is relevant, complete and sent to us on time. However, you can upload evidence or reports to mycareerpath®. There is no need to transfer all this information to the online portal activity by activity. You can upload supporting documents in a number of formats including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF.
If you are asked to submit your CPD as part of IEMA’s annual sampling process, you will be required to submit using mycareerpath®.
I have already started my CPD log using the old IEMA form. Do I need to start again?
If you’ve already recorded some CPD activities using IEMA’s previous Word form, you can attach this as completed evidence to the CPD portal – there’s no need to transfer all this information to the online portal activity by activity. You can upload supporting documents in a number of formats including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF.