Don’t leave CPD to the last minute

AMTRA urges SQPs to be proactive and take advantage of opportunities available

After an encouraging early uptake at the start of the current AMTRA SQP Continuing Professional Development (CPD) period, AMTRA animal medicine advisors are being urged to keep ahead of the game and take advantage of the many opportunities to top up their CPD points regularly.

“It is quite common to see a surge in training at the early stage of a new CPD period,” says Stephen Dawson, general secretary of SQP regulatory body AMTRA.

“Unfortunately, this is often followed by a drop-off, once initial awareness has faded, and the daily routine takes over.”

While this may not be a problem in the short-term, it is all too frequent to see complacency take over and deadlines suddenly looming.

“We may have only recently started the current CPD period in July 2017, and this runs through until June 2019, but commitments can change so we always encourage SQPs to get the points under their belt as soon as they can,” continues Stephen.

“CPD helps with confidence and knowledge to go that extra mile with customer service. It is not only for the SQP’s professional development, and is essential to retain SQP status, but CPD also helps both the business and individuals’ own personal and career progression.”

There are various channels to obtain CPD points. Always remember to look out for features and opportunities to earn points via ETN, and the AMTRA website www.amtra.org.uk holds full details of events, quizzes and other point-earning opportunities.

SQPs are also urged to pay attention to the communication from the AMTRA team, either directly or via employers. While some pieces of CPD are available over an extended period, others such as particular events may only be available once.

“Seize opportunities while you can, and don’t leave things till the last minute,” adds Stephen.

“Each time, a few SQPs miss the deadline, and have to sit an exam to retain their SQP status. Perhaps one or two might consider that a fun challenge, but for most it is something to avoid, particularly as it is not a cheap option either. There is not only potential disruption to daily activities and professional capabilities, but also a very tangible financial penalty involved.”