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SAICA NEWS: CPD

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First CPD cycle

The first CPD cycle, which started on 1 January 2006 and ended on 31 December 2008, ended on a phenomenal note with 98.5% of SAICA’s members complying by the extended recording date of 31 May 2009.

During the months leading up to the end of the period as well as the extension, SAICA used exhaustive measures to contact members that had outstanding CPD by sending reminder emails, SMSs and conducting an extensive telephone call effort in order to assist members personally with recording their CPD.

Why CPD is important
It goes almost without saying that if you fail to keep up to date in your professional field of expertise, not only does your marketability suffer; in addition, you become less able to satisfy your clients/customers.

Chartered Accountants all over the world face increased knowledge and skills expectations. They and their professional associations also face unprecedented scrutiny about the quality of internal controls, governance, financial statements, independent audits and many more expertise issues.

Continuing development of your professional competence and lifelong learning are critical if you, as professional CAs(SA), are to meet these expectations to defend your designation and enhance public protection. Being a professional therefore translates into embracing a lifelong learning culture.

In other words, CPD keeps you, the holder of the CA(SA) designation, relevant in business, which results in sustainable employment and leads to sustainable premium income earning potential.
According to research conducted by the Institute of Continuing Professional Development, a requirement for greater transparency in business processes has emerged, and the range of business activities carried out by many professionals has expanded. These changes are increasing the importance of CPD as the main system for ensuring that professionals update their skills and knowledge.

Second CPD cycle
SAICA has introduced rolling cycles with effect from the second CPD cycle, which commences 1 January 2009. This essentially means that the second CPD cycle runs from 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2011, and that the third CPD cycle then will run from 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2012, etc. The benefits of rolling cycles are twofold in that members are encouraged to perform and record their CPD regularly but are also given professional flexibility to perform CPD when it is convenient for them.

CPD Points required
In each three year rolling cycle, 120 CPD points are required. One hour of CPD is equivalent to one CPD point. The overall points requirement is then split between 60 verifiable points and 60 non-verifiable points. A minimum of 20 points of CPD must be performed and recorded in each year of the three year rolling cycle. These minimum 20 points may be verifiable, non-verifiable or a combination of both.

CPD recording
CPD may be recorded on the SAICA CPD system, which is available on the SAICA website, or members may declare that they are self-compliant (and therefore maintain their own records) either on the SAICA CPD system, which requires the simple ticking of a question in the online declaration, or submitting the manual declaration to SAICA, which will be attached each year to the invoices. Declarations have to be completed by 31 March of the year following the calendar year to which the declaration relates. Members that declare self-compliance are required to keep a detailed record of their CPD points.
Exemptions
For members that received an exemption from SAICA from performing and recording CPD during the first CPD cycle, the exemption will be carried forward into the second CPD cycle unless they notify SAICA that they have professional responsibilities in which case the exemption will be reversed.

A blanket exemption is given to members over the age of 60. Members affected by the blanket exemption are required to notify SAICA if they have professional responsibilities. The exemption will then be reversed.

Reductions
Members that take a temporary absence from the workplace may apply for a reduction in CPD if the absence exceeds six months in a three year cycle. Such members are advised that there are several verifiable opportunities available to them at no cost. These opportunities include ASA verifiable CPD and Integritax CPD – this provides members with free CPD, which may be performed in the comfort of their own homes while on extended sick leave or maternity leave.

This free CPD provides members with a capped CPD of ten hours per annum for ASA verifiable CPD and ten hours for Integritax CPD. CPD enhances employability because it keeps you up to date with developments in the profession and makes you more marketable as a potential employee.

Members who received a reduction during the first CPD cycle are required to comply with the full CPD requirement unless they apply for a reduction in CPD for the second CPD cycle and are granted a reduction.

SAICA stands ready to assist members with CPD recording at 08610 72422 or +27 11 621 6600. Visit www.saica.co.za to record your CPD regularly. You may email cpd@saica.co.za for any queries.

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