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The Future of: The Importance of CPD

COVID-19 threw people of all professions into a unique, uncertain and unfamiliar way of working. And the Chartered Institute of Professional Development found that only 55% of employees felt that they’d been given adequate information about returning to work.

A worker sits at a laptop while another stands in front of him, writing notes on a whiteboard and giving him instructions.

One key part of making workers feel secure and confident working post-pandemic, is CPD. If you’re a CPD manager, this article explains the increasing importance of CPD in 2021’s final quarter. It should help you tailor your CPD programmes according to today’s landscape.

Employee Retention

A stressed employee scrolls on a laptop

In a 2021 survey by HR software company Personio, 38% of workers in the UK and Ireland stated their plans to quit their professions in the next 6 months to a year. This isn’t an anomaly – economists are calling this period the ‘Great Resignation’. Workers from almost all sectors and countries are looking to make big changes in their career paths.

Retaining employees is much cheaper than having to hire more employees. Companies are therefore eager to improve employee retention. One key method is through CPD. 93% of employees in 2021 say that they will stay longer at a company that invests in their career development. Therefore, companies are increasing their willingness to invest in excellent CPD providers. And if they’re not, you can educate them about the above statistics.

Therefore, CPD is becoming more important in future as it is a key way to prevent the ‘Great Resignation’ from affecting more companies. CPD managers need to ensure that the great effort they put into CPD sessions is visible. These sessions need to be enjoyable and encourage learners to give stellar feedback. This will alert companies that your CPD opportunities have a positive effect on their employees’ job satisfaction and therefore likelihood of staying at the company.

CPD sessions have become essential to helping workers feel more secure at their jobs. So, CPD managers must ensure that their activities do not end up becoming an afterthought or box-ticking exercise. They must not be overused for the sake of them, and CPD co-ordinators must ensure that the training managers they assign can show effortless passion and excitement for the training course. This will raise the likelihood of companies investing in the important CPD sessions you arrange.

Increased Productivity, Increased Profits

Measuring productivity objectively can be quite difficult. However, it can’t be denied that moving from the office, to working from home, then back to the office, has forced the productivity of workers to fluctuate in a way that companies are keen to correct.

Many UK studies found that the majority of workers felt that their productivity had either somewhat or highly improved compared to before the pandemic. As people have gotten used to working from home, there is a concern that the adjustment of coming back to the office with people again might cause these productivity levels to reduce again. And with them, lowered profits for companies.

Therefore, coordinating returns to the office with regularly scheduled professional development sessions, is integral to make employees associate the return to “normal” work with a keen return to productive development. This is because many people have felt that working from home caused them to be left to their own devices – employers are keen to prevent that feeling and get workers back into the swing of developing, not just looking at the smaller picture of the tasks they have to complete. This will greatly increase profits, as companies that have focused on upskilling employees have reported 14-29% profit increases.

So, how does this reflect how CPD managers should alter their programmes? The key phrase in the previous paragraph is “regularly scheduled”. The best way to improve the productivity that has fluctuated so much and get people used to in-office/on-site working patterns again, is to get your learners into a regular routine of those all-important CPD sessions.

Mental Health and CPD

In a previous article, we discussed how mental health and CPD are becoming more interwoven. CPD can make workers feel more equipped to face challenges, and therefore boost their morale and mental health. Therefore, CPD programmes are expected to consider aspects of mental health more. It is integral for them to not simply add more stresses to workers after a difficult year.

The aforementioned UK studies about workers feeling that their productivity improved during the pandemic, also mentioned that higher productivity (which can be developed through regular training) is associated with better mental health.

Therefore, we can assume that CPD will become even more important to organisations in future as they complete two purposes: helping the professional development but also the mental stability of the people of an organisation.

Reduced Risks

A man in safety gear walks towards a construction site to inspect it for health and safety

The Coronavirus crisis resulted in a greater emphasis having to be placed on the safe behaviour and conditions of employees. In addition to this, 2020 and 2021 have resulted in companies placing increased importance on the ethics of their own behaviours and practices.

Therefore, the importance of CPD is much higher today than it has ever been. Workplace safety training, as well as ethics training, get more and more integral every day. CPD managers must incorporate or offer these in their CPD programmes.


In so many different facets, CPD is increasing in all the different aspects that it has to include. It is no longer a mere box-ticking exercise, but something that employers are keen to implement. Therefore, skilled CPD managers that can incorporate all of these may be higher in demand.

If you’re a CPD co-ordinator that needs your programmes to be recorded and/or promoted so that they can reach more people, contact CPD Online here for an informal chat about what we can do for you.

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