CONTINUOUS PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT POLICY

  1. INTRODUCTION

The knowledge and skills needed to function effectively as a Municipal Finance Official (hereafter referred to as “members”) in local government or any other environment, continue to change and expand at a rapid rate. Members face increased knowledge and skills expectations. Continued development of professional competence and lifelong learning are critical if members are to meet these expectations.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) refers to learning activities that develop and maintain capabilities to enable members to perform competently within their professional environments.


  1. PURPOSE

A member should perform professional services with due care, competence and diligence and has a continuing duty to maintain professional knowledge and skill at a level required to ensure that a client or employer receives the advantage of competent professional service based on up-to-date developments in practice, legislation and techniques.


  1. DEFINITIONS

“Continuous professional development” refers to post qualification learning activities for developing the capabilities and skills of individuals to perform competently within their professional environments.

“Post qualification” refers to the period after qualification as a Fellow, Associate or Licentiate member of the Institute.

“Structured learning” refers to a measurable and verifiable activity designed to impart specific knowledge and skills. Structured learning can, in some respects, not be totally within the control of the individual undertaking the learning. For example, a third party may determine the scope or design of the activity or when or how the learning takes place.

“Skills” refer to the various types of abilities required to apply knowledge and values appropriately and effectively in a professional context.

“Relevant” refers to subject matter or activities associated with municipal and public finance and management, general accounting or finance


  1. OBJECTIVE

The objective of CPD is to assist members to develop and maintain professional competence in order to provide services of high quality in the public interest. Measurement of completion of CPD can be achieved in different ways. The input-based approach attempts to measure by establishing a set amount of learning activity that is considered appropriate to develop and maintain professional competence. The output-based approach requires members to demonstrate, by way of outcomes what competencies have been acquired or maintained through CPD activities.


  1. PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY

The primary responsibility for competence lies with the member and all members have an obligation to develop and maintain their professional competence, relevant to the nature of their work and professional responsibilities.


  1. COMPULSORY PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

CPD is compulsory and is applicable to all active members registered as Fellows, Associates, Licentiates and Juniors of the Institute.


  1. REPORTING PERIOD

The first reporting cycle commenced on 1 January 2011. CPD will be reported on a three year rolling cycle by reporting on a quarterly basis. For all new members the CPD cycle commences in the year following registration. For Juniors IMFO members it will commence on 1 January 2013.


  1. MEASUREMENT

Members are required to complete credits as per table below, of relevant CPD activity in a three-year rolling period.

Membership Level Credits per 3yr Cycle Min. Credits p.a. Voluntary Credits p.a.
Senior Associate 100 25 5 credits towards ethics
Associate 100 25 5 credits towards ethics
Licentiate 100 25 5 credits towards ethics
Junior 50 15 5 credits towards ethics


  1. QUALIFYING PROGRAMMES

IMFO will not prescribe specific courses, programmes, journals or other forms of learning or training material. Members are free to choose relevant CPD activities based on their identified learning and development needs and IMFO will rely on the professional judgement of members in this regard. (see table on page 4)


  1. REPORTING AND RECORD-KEEPING

Members bear primary responsibility for documenting compliance with CPD activities. Members have two options for maintaining CPD records:
  • Members may record CPD activities on IMFO’s online system. This is the preferred IMFO option.
  • OR
  • Members may provide IMFO with an annual declaration that they are undertaking a CPD programme.
  • A randomly selected sample of members following this option will be subject to a verification process conducted annually by IMFO. It is therefore important that members still keep their own records of their learning activities. Should a disciplinary matter be brought before IMFO where the issue of incompetence arises, the onus will be on the member to prove that they have complied with the CPD policy.

  1. SANCTIONS

Members who do not comply with CPD requirements will be referred to IMFO’s Investigation Committee.


  1. EXEMPTIONS AND REDUCTIONS

Members or associates may apply for exemption from or a reduction in the CPD requirements based on retirement, extended leave of absence or other similar reasons. The onus is on the member to inform IMFO of a change in circumstances which could lead to the conditions for an exemption or reduction no longer being met.

Retired members over 60 years of age are exempt from declaring CPD annually, but still have an obligation to undergo CPD should they have any professional commitments.

  1. CONCLUSION

IMFO cannot provide assurance that all members and associates will provide high quality professional service all the time. Doing so involves more than monitoring professional competence, it would involve the application of that knowledge with professional judgement and an objective attitude. Similarly IMFO cannot be assured that every person who participates in a continuing professional development programme will reap the full benefits of that programme, because of variances in individual commitment and capacity to learn! Despite the inherent limitations however, the Institute Council believes a continuing professional development programme is important for an individual member to fulfil his/her professional activities and responsibilities and the maintenance of professional standards, ethics and knowledge.


HOUR SYSTEM FOR CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Each member must score 100 hours CPD during a three year cycle and a minimum of 25 each year – reporting on quarterly

CPD CATOGORY CPD AREAS NO OF HOURS EVIDENCE TO SUBMIT
  1. Education & Learning opportunities
  1. Passed any relevant training course that was formally assessed
Credits as awarded by event Copy of Certificate
  1. Attendance of any training course, conference, seminar or workshop presented by IMFO
IMFO will capture credits form attendance register
  1. Studying relevant post-graduate courses
Copy of registration form and results
  1. Attendance of any training course, conference, seminar or workshop presented by another relevant professional body
  1. Copy of invitation
  2. Copy of attendance certificate or attendance register
  1. For either setting or moderating an exam paper required for entrance to IMFO (e.g. lg finance 1, 2 & 3; lg accounting; lg law).
1 credit per subject Copy of paper
  1. Reviewing syllabi regarding lg finance related subjects per subject.
3 credits per subject Copy of request from institution
  1. Acting as active Principle/Mentor & Assessor for Junior/Licentiate Member of the Institute
5 credits p.a. Quarterly reports
  1. Holding/Acting a post as lecturer, assessor, moderator or instructor for relevant structured courses of accredited providers
5 credits p.a.
  1. Copy of appointment letter
  2. Copy of certificate
  1. Writing of technical articles or books
3 credits per article
10 credits per book
Copy of article or letter from editor for book
  1. Written comment on relevant draft legislation, regulations and policies
3 credits per comment Copy of comment
  1. Drafting Guidelines
10 credits each Copy of draft
  1. Drafting policies and procedures
10 credits each Copy of policy and procedures
  1. Committees
  1. Serving on a Standing Committee/Branch of the Institute:
    • Serving
    • Attending
    • Chairperson or Deputy Chairperson
1 credits p.a.
1 credit per meeting
1 credit per meeting
Copy of appointment letter
Copy of attendance register
Copy of Agenda
  1. Representation on formal organised discussion groups
2 credits per meeting Copy of attendance register of discussions
  1. Representing IMFO on committees, working groups, etc. of other relevant bodies/organisations/institutes
5 credits per meeting & attendance Copy of attendance register
  1. Speaker at technical meeting, workshops, seminars and conferences of the Institute or relevant organisation
4 credits per event Copy of agenda/programme
  1. General
  1. Attendance of provincial branch meetings that include learning activities
½ day – 3 credits
1-day – 6 credits
2-days – 12 credits
Copy of programme
Copy of attendance register
  1. Compile relevant reports for the Institute Council or Standing Committee or other relevant committees of recognized professional bodies
10 credits each report Copy of report
  1. Official visits to other municipalities, provinces or organisations to capacitate or transfer skills
10 credits per visit Copy of confirmation of visit


Tel: +27 11 394 0879
Email: ceo@cigfaro.co.za

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