How to stay ahead in your workplace

'You must take what you learn back to your work'

According to research for the Consultative Committee for Professional Management Organisations (CCPMO), people working in HR who hold professional qualifications and membership stand to gain £152,000 in additional earnings over the course of their career.

With more than 135,000 members, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) is Europe's largest HR professional body. While their qualifications are not mandatory to practice in the field, the CIPD runs a range of courses and conferences across the UK that are designed to further the HR professionals' development. They say these are respected and sought after by employers – and that's a belief supported by the CCPMO's findings.

Vanessa Robinson, head of HR practice development, says: "A CIPD qualification gives a certain status and indicates a standard, but because the world of HR continually moves and changes, we also stress the importance of ongoing continuing professional development (CDP) to make sure skills, knowledge and experiences stay relevant."

Karen Ver, learning and technology manager at the institute, says: "I've been at the CIPD for 16 years in seven different jobs, and I've been actively encouraged throughout to set out a development plan that suits my individual needs, and also fits in with the organisation strategy."

The CIPD currently funds Ver's Masters in blended and online education. "My course enables me to be more creative and effective. It benefits the company because I pass what I'm learning through to the programmes they offer to the public and members," she explains.

BPP Business School also delivers professional qualifications. There's the Masters in HR management and a range of postgraduate diplomas and certificates. Professor Chris Brady, dean of BPP, explains: "We try to provide both the specific skills that companies wants, and a professional qualification, or a step towards one, that adds value for the employee. That means people on our courses get quality, targeted training, but they also get something they can put on their CV."

Wendy Smith, programme leader at BPP, adds: "We're passionate about having ex-practitioners as our lecturers; they can relate to the academia and bring it to life. HR professionals have got to be able to take what they learn as part of their CPD back to real situations in the workplace."

That relevance is crucial for Maya Forrester, HR officer at the Honourable Society of Middle Temple. Forrester has an Masters in human resource management, and regularly attends free seminars on employment law, run by solicitors firms. "My Masters certainly broadened my knowledge and expertise, but I haven't found it practically useful in my day-to-day job," she says. The seminars, meanwhile, are well-attended, useful and enjoyable. "In the best events, you break off into groups after the lecture to discuss it with an employment law specialist. I usually learn a lot and they're a good networking opportunity," she adds.

But Forrester's CPD is broader than courses and seminars. "I read relevant publications and newsletters, and I always keep an eye out for news – even when I'm just reading the paper. I'm part of an email network of HR professionals too, which works like an internet forum. If someone has a question or a problem, they'll email and people from different areas of HR will respond. There are recruitment consultants, employment lawyers, HR consultants and so on," she says.

Robinson agrees: "CPD is about keeping up with what's going on within the profession. For our members, we've developed a new online tool called My HR Map, which helps people at all levels of their career build a picture of where they are and how they might progress. That could be reading books, attending courses, going to conferences; all sorts of things." Some 14,000 CIPD members have explored My HR Map so far.

"To me, CPD is ongoing," Forrester concludes. "It happens through having an awareness of changes and developments within HR, as well as through courses and events."

Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
life
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
Sport
Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
News
Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
Voices
Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
News
Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
News
i100
News
Xander van der Burgt, at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
scienceA Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
Latest stories from i100
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Student

Ashdown Group: Trainee / Graduate Helpdesk Analyst

£20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A highly reputable business is looking to rec...

Recruitment Genius: Graduate Software Developer

£25000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Join a fast growing software co...

Guru Careers: Graduate Account Executive / Digital Account Executive

£20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Graduate / Digital Account Exe...

Guru Careers: Junior Designer / Design Graduate

£18k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Junior Designer / Design Graduate to join...

Day In a Page

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick