Incorporated Public Accountants are members of the profession of accounting. Being Members of this Profession you are required to meet professional and ethical standards. Competence is a core part of these standards, and the function of Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is the ensuring that competence is maintained.
The Institute of Incorporated Public Accountants (IIPA) believes that any person authorised to describe himself/herself as an “Incorporated Public Accountant” and to use the designatory letters “AIPA” or “FIPA” must be properly academically qualified and have the proper training and experience to be awarded this prestigious honour. One thing that any person with an involvement in accounting will quickly learn is that the environment never stays still.
The Incorporated Public Accountant knows that professional and ethical standards, law, the regulatory environment and a range of other areas are constantly changing, and that in order to be an effective professional the s/he must continue to educate himself/herself in all relevant areas and to hone their skills as well. Learning does not stop on admission to the IIPA, it is more correct to say that it is only starting.
Modern professionals must maintain their understanding of the latest developments in areas such as accounting, finance, tax and company law. They must also adequately develop their knowledge and skills in any area that they wish to develop in. That is where CPD becomes essential.
Areas such as taxation, company law, accounting practice, statutory audit and corporate insolvency are complex often highly regulated areas and those who wish to work in those areas must commit to ensuring that they actively stay on top of the current practice in these areas.
So, the answer to the question “Why CPD?” is clear:
- CPD ensures your capabilities keep pace with the current standards of other accountants.
- 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. If you stand still you will get left behind, as 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 helps advance the body of knowledge and technology within the profession.
- CPD can lead to increased public confidence in individual professionals and the profession as a whole.