Continued development of professional knowledge and skills has the following distinct benefits for the individual professional accountant:
Maintains or increases the level of technical competence
Extends the range of accountancy skills
Develops new areas of expertise
Promotes confidence and pride in your work
Increases career options
Increasing job satisfaction
Increased client satisfaction
In other words, it keeps the holder of the CA(NAM) designation relevant in business, which results in sustainable employment and leads to sustainable premier income earning potential.
It is recognized that CPD learning can take place in a structured or an unstructured learning mode. Examples of Structured Learning include:
courses presented by educational institutions, member bodies or employers;
individual study programs (correspondence courses, audiotape or videotape packages, computerized learning programs) that require some evidence of successful completion by the member;
participation as a speaker or attendee in conferences, briefing sessions or discussion groups;
service as a member of a technical committee of a professional body or individual firm as long as a specific portion of the committee meeting is formally designed to impart specific knowledge in preparation for committee debate or discussion; writing technical articles, papers or books, within reasonable limits, because the output is clearly verifiable.
Apart from their participation in structured learning, accountants need to keep abreast of a wide range of developments affecting their profession, clients and employers. This is done through unstructured learning, such as:
reading professional journals, the financial and business press,
discussing current developments with colleagues,
accessing relevant databases on the Internet and other activities.
The basis of the ICAN CPD obligation is the IFAC standard dealing with CPD. The full standard can be downloaded from the IFAC website (www.ifac.org) but the specific requirements of the standard are as follows:
Promotion of Lifelong learning
Member bodies should promote the importance of continuous improvement of competence and a commitment to lifelong learning for all professional accountants.
Access to CPD
Member bodies should facilitate access to CPD opportunities and resources to assist professional accountants in meeting their responsibility for lifelong learning.
Mandatory CPD for all Professional Accountants
Member bodies should require all professional accountants to develop and maintain competence relevant and appropriate to their work and professional responsibilities. The responsibility for enhancing and maintaining competence rests with each professional accountant.
Monitoring and Enforcement
Member bodies should establish a systematic process to monitor whether professional accountants meet the CPD requirement and provide for appropriate sanctions for failure to meet the requirement, including failure to report or failure to develop and monitor competence.
Measurement of completion of CPD can be achieved by at least three different approaches, namely, input-based approaches, output-based approaches or combination approaches. The measurement and verification system would differ between input, output and combination approaches.
|Input based approach||Output based approach||Combination approach|
|Member bodies operating an input-based approach should require the professional accountant to:||Member bodies implementing an output-based approach should require the professional accountant to demonstrate the maintenance and development of relevant competence by periodically providing evidence that has been:||Member bodies implementing a combination of input and output based approaches should follow the principles of input and output systems, as applicable, set out in the Standard.|
|A||Complete at least 120 hours or equivalent learning units of relevant professional develop-ment activity in each rolling three-year period, of which 60 hours or equivalent learning units should be verifiable;||Objectively verified by a competent source; and|
|B||Complete at least 20 hours or equivalent learning units in each year; and||Measured using a valid competence assessment method.|| |
|C||Track and measure learning activities to meet the above requirements.|