CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT (CPD): WHAT IS IT, AND WHY DOES IT MATTER?

5 Reasons to Join a Professional Body

No matter which industry you are in, from labour occupations to positions that require a PhD cape, there is a professional body geared for you. But in this online world, are they still relevant? The answer is unequivocally, yes! Whether you’re looking to gain first-hand expertise, network with industry leaders or add extra credibility to your resume, joining a professional body today is a powerful career move!
If you’re still on the fence, here are 5 Reasons to Join a Professional Body:

1. Knowledge is Power

Who doesn’t want to be top in their field? Broaden your knowledge and expertise with access to informative webinars, workshops and exhibitions. This will keep you up to date with the latest industry innovations and trends and ultimately enhance your professional development. Of course, staying ahead of the competition is an added bonus!
Furthermore, most professional bodies offer free resources in the form of guides, industry forums and newsletters.

2. Network like a Mover and Shaker

Get out those business cards! It’s common knowledge- making connections is vital to career progression. Joining professional bodies and associations provide countless opportunities to network with industry leaders and relevant parties. Conversation flows easily with likeminded people in an environment that promotes the interchange of information. The relationships built can be very valuable long-term.

3. Show you Mean Business

Being a member of a professional body adds credibility. Why is this? Most institutions have a thorough assessment process that applicants must pass before they are granted membership. Membership acts as confirmation that you have reached a certain level of expertise in your profession and are qualified. Importantly, it also shows you take your career seriously, reassuring employers and clients that you are committed to your professional development.
Furthermore, many professional associations come with the added benefit of a designation- letters after your name. This title adds professionalism and a certain stature to a name.

4. Career Opportunities

Take advantage of career resources and the hidden job market! Professional bodies often have targeted job listings available to their members or access to positions that are not yet advertised. You never know when you will run into someone who knows someone else who’s hiring! This boosts your chances of getting hired in a line of work you love.

Plus! Listing membership in a professional body is an excellent addition to a CV.

5. Make Friends

A perhaps overlooked and underappreciated benefit of joining professional bodies, is the simple act of making new friends! These bodies provide an opportunity to escape the confines of your comfort zone and meet new, interesting people. Think of it this way…. you already have something in common!

Looking to join a financial professional body? The ICBA is a professional body for bookkeepers, accountants, office administrators and financial managers in Southern Africa. For more information, visit www.icba.co.za.