October 14, 2015

Why CIPD Qualifications are the obvious choice if you’re serious about your career in L&D

The CIPD has been driving the professionalism of L&D for many years and is probably the most highly recognised set of qualifications across the profession through its network of approved centres.

Recent research carried out by the CIPD in conjunction with the benchmarking research organisation, Towards Maturity looks into how L&D roles and responsibilities are changing and how to ensure L&D practitioners can keep abreast of those changes and have the right skills and attitudes.

Some of the key findings of the report regarding what skills L&D professionals currently have and what skills the industry currently needs make for interesting reading. It highlights a significant discrepancy between the skills, knowledge and capability that L&D professionals know they need to possess and the ones that they actually have.

For example, the report says: ‘In spite of the fact that top learning organisations are moving away from training delivery to a performance consulting model ‘just 53% of L&D professionals agree that the “course” is only one of many options for building skills and performance’.’

The report also shows that L&D professionals are lacking essential skills around business and commercial understanding and influence and technology.

Through all of this research activity and through talking to members and industry figures, the CIPD has been working on gaining a clearer picture of how it can improve the skills base of those in the profession.

What’s the result? “We released two new qualifications earlier this year in response to the changing landscape in L&D,” says Andy Lancaster, head of learning and development at the CIPD. These two new qualifications are at Level 3 and 5. “There was a complete re-write to make them really up to date in terms of base content and incorporating new themes,” says Lancaster.

Those new themes include learner engagement, neuroscience, learning and technology, data analytics, social collaborative learning, consultancy skills and more. Lancaster says it is really important that the CIPD and other industry bodies keep a close eye on emerging trends. “There’s a number of themes that we are tracking that we think will be important in the coming years,” he says.

Lancaster says research shows that L&D professionals are sometimes so busy concentrating on the skills and development of the wider workforce that they neglect their own skills and development. The CIPD hopes to launch a new product early next year that looks specifically at boosting the professional development of L&D professionals. Called the ‘Future of Learning’, it incorporates curated content, social community and thought leadership interaction and it will be available not just to CIPD members, but to the L&D community at large.

Another professional development initiative that was recently launched by the CIPD is its ‘Leaders in Learning Network’, a free evening networking event which is currently up and running in London, Edinburgh, East Anglia and the South West and is due to commence in Manchester soon, where DPG’s very own Mike Collins will be speaking.

Lancaster says new L&D thinking is emerging all the time, but that L&D is struggling to keep up. Industry professionals need to be forward-thinking and make sure they have the skills needed now and in the coming years.

You can find out more about CIPD’s L&D Qualifications at http://cipd.dpgplc.co.uk