The importance of continuing professional development

Thu 27 Jun 2019
Posted by: Sam Pileggi

Oscar Wilde quote

"You can never be overdressed or overeducated" - Oscar Wilde

CPD (or to give its full name, Continuing Professional Development), is ‘the holistic commitment of professionals towards the enhancement of personal skills and proficiency throughout their careers.’

In real terms, CPD is the term used to describe the learning activities professionals engage in to develop and enhance their abilities. It is an ongoing process and ensures you continue to be competent in your profession.

Participating in a CPD program delivers benefits to the individual, their profession and the wider community:

  • CPD ensures your capabilities keep pace with the current standards of others in the same field.
  • CPD ensures that you maintain and enhance the knowledge and skills you need to deliver a professional service to your customers, clients and the community.
  • CPD ensures that you and your knowledge stay relevant and up to date. You are more aware of the changing trends and directions in your profession. The pace of change is probably faster than it’s ever been – and this is a feature of the new normal that we live and work in. If you stand still you will get left behind, as the currency of your knowledge and skills becomes out-dated.
  • CPD helps you continue to make a meaningful contribution to your team. You become more effective in the workplace. This assists you to advance in your career and move into new positions where you can lead,
    manage, influence, coach and mentor others.
  • CPD helps you to stay interested and interesting. Experience is a great teacher, but it does mean that we tend to do what we have done before. Focused CPD opens you up to new possibilities, new knowledge and new skill areas.
  • CPD can deliver a deeper understanding of what it means to be a professional, along with a greater appreciation of the implications and impacts of your work.
  • CPD can lead to increased public confidence in individual professionals and their profession as a whole.

The Institute's CPD programme supports our mission “to enhance the international performance of the United Kingdom by setting and raising professional standards in International Trade Management practice”.

The CPD programme allows members of the Institute to maintain and develop their knowledge, skills and competence systematically throughout their career within international trade.

In addition to recognising the development of a member’s technical knowledge, our CPD programme takes into account the enhancement of the practical skills, which are required to operate effectively and professionally within the international trade arena.

How CPD works:

1. You can secure CPD points through a wide range of activities associated with International Trade; these include private study, conferences, meetings, training courses, imparting skills and recognised qualifications. Each activity is allocated a set amount of CPD points, which can be advised by the IOE&IT.

2. You record each activity in your online journal on your member account, selecting whether it relates to contemporary or generic issues, and enter the appropriate points for the activity. You should also upload documentary evidence to support your claim for CPD points.

3. To gain your Continuing Professional Development certificate, you will need to secure a minimum of 100 CPD points per year, 50 from Contemporary Issues and 50 from Generic Issues.

A year’s subscription to the CPD programme costs just £38 a year.

Find out more at or call 01733 404400.


This article originally featured in the Spring 2018 issue of 'World Trade Matters', the IOE&IT's quarterly Professional Member Journal.