Making ripples: Update on L&D activity at CIPD

By Andy Lancaster, Head of Learning and Development at CIPD

Time flies .. it's been just over six months since I joined CIPD as Head of Learning and Development.

As well as running the Institute's "learning arm" a key part of my role has been to support CIPD's increased engagement with L&D practitioners.

This was one of the reasons I felt so motivated to join CIPD. As a longstanding L&D Fellow, the clear commitment by CIPD to increase L&D engagement and innovation was an exciting prospect to be involved with!

So with that motivation and having just got back from a summer break I thought I'd take a look back over the past six months or so to report about what we have been up to L&D-wise. This is all part of CIPD "working out loud" to keep members and non-members informed!

So here goes!

- A full rewrite of the CIPD L&D Level 3 and 5 qualifications is taking place (aimed for launch January 2015) to provide modern qualifications for L&D practitioners and to underpin new continuing professional development themes and products. This is taking place in consultation with L&D gurus and through open dialogue using social media channels.

- The "Leaders in Learning" network continues to grow. It's an event that is free to attend and open to those leading in L&D (by email application). The events have been driven by showcasing best practice from network members. The first three events have been based in London but in response to desire for diverse locations the network is going regional in 2014/15.

- The "Leaders in Learning LinkedIn Group is providing social collaboration and shared best practice. Click here to find out more.

- New "Leading in Learning" blog on CIPD website primarily populated with blogs from L&D professionals. Happy to receive ideas from guest bloggers! Click here to view the blogs.

- New professional development opportunities such as Digital Learning Design written and delivered by Clive Shepherd and endorsed by the eLearning Network (eLN). More things are being planned, so watch this space.

- Ruth Stuart CIPD's dedicated L&D researcher is delivering specific research with practical applications for the L&D profession. This year it includes: Volunteering and L&D, Applying neuroscience, How L&D is changing and Transformational change.

- A new strategic partnership has been formed with Towards Maturity ( You can read about our joint aspirations here.

- We have held our first L&D Roundtable event with Towards Maturity which drew key L&D thinkers on the topic of "How to increase strategic alignment between business goals and L&D activity". The event has already resulted in a People Management article and we are also creating a White Paper with practical "calls to action".

- Steps in partnership working with key L&D bodies for example the Learning and Performance Institute (LPI). As a first initiative we've agreed with LPI that CIPD members can undertake the popular Certificate in Online Facilitation (COLF) course at a preferential price. We have also just become partners with The Charity Learning Consortium.

- A refreshed and dedicated annual conference called "The Learning and Development Show" which this year saw a positive increase and feedback on virtually every metric. We've also taken on-board suggestions for use of more interactive methods at future events.

- An L&D focus article in each month's People Management magazine to represent L&D interests and innovations.

- "Working out loud" using social media to engage and provide updates about what we are doing in L&D. For example, we used Twitter to engage invite thoughts and contributions from L&D professionals to shape the new Level 5 L&D qualification units and we got some brilliant ideas back.

- We have been reviewing the Experience Assessment route to membership for L&D practitioners to recognise the value of experience not just qualifications for membership. It has been great to see a number of L&D professionals joining CIPD through this method.

So, CIPD's renewed vision and commitment to engage with L&D professionals is having tangible outcomes.

And, with L&D as a key CIPD customer development area be assured that there are lots of interesting things planned for the coming year. For example:

- We will create a new "L&D Advisory Group" of thought leaders and thinkers to help shape our L&D agenda and professional development offering.

-  We will be running specific L&D focussed sessions at this year's CIPD Annual Conference including an innovative "L&D Ignite presentation driven Open Space" ... look out for session G2 "Leaders in Learning: exploring new tools and skills in people development.". We also have sessions on "Advancing L&D to Create the Learning Practitioners of the Future" [E2], "Designing Learning Initiatives using Neuroscience" [W5], "Applying Neuroscience and Behavioural Science to L&D Initiatives" [H2] and "Tailoring the Learning Experience: How People Data Can Help" [F2]

- We are exploring the delivery of new flexible "digital" learning solutions and continuing professional development.

Thanks to all those within CIPD, particularly Gill White, CIPD members and L&D peers who have supported these exciting developments.

A core CIPD value is collaboration and we couldn't be making such progress without you!

You can find out more about Andy on LinkedIn and follow him on Twitter @AndyLancasterUK.

Thank you for your comments. There may be a short delay in this going live on the blog page as we moderate the comments added to our blogs.

  • Anonymous

    Without any bias because I know you and have long since championed what CIPD stood for and could do more of this is such a satisfying development to read about and I appreciate you taking the time to recap like this.

    We don't want a "what have the Romans done for us" approach here and the work you and Gill White are leading has put right an imbalance.

    Now powering on from this into an excellent HR profession including the best learning practitioners becomes more viable.

    Keep it up and hope the community continues to support you. Those who don't are making a choice by self-exclusion and have no cause to criticise.

    All for one etc.  Great work Andy.

  • Anonymous

    The role of L&D needs a proper and separate focus within the HR community. Please keep up the good work.

  • Hi Perry,

    I'm acutely aware that at CIPD we haven't always communicated very well about what we are up to and that has clearly been fed back to the Institute by members and non-members on numerous occasions!

    There is a new emphasis at CIPD to "work out loud" to keep everyone in the loop - hence the idea of the six month update blog!

    Thanks for your continued support - and most definitely "All for one and one for all"!

  • Anonymous

    Great to see you embracing the "work out loud" approach and share what you are thinking as well as doing. Look forward to seeing the details of the regional events which I believe are going to be open to non-members as well.

  • Hi Paul,

    Thanks for the positive feedback, which is appreciated.

    Yes, "Leaders in Learning" events are for CIPD members and non-members.

    Keep an eye out on social media later in the year for news about the regional initiatives.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Andy, it is really great to see the progress and sense of momentum that has been created in such a short time frame. It's heartening to see the level of engagement an collaboration that sits at the centre of this activity - and I'm hoping that more and more practitioners will want to be involved. It's easy to knock things down, it is harder (but more fruitful) to build - so I'm hoping that people get involved with the architecture and construction of the CIPD L&D offering. DDS

  • Hello Andy, great to have up to date information about what is happening at CIPD and to see the changes that are taking place around the approach to L&D.  It really feels like some momentum has been achieved in a relatively short space of time - though I know that there is lots more to be done.  I am particularly looking forward to Leaders in Learning going regional and hope that means Manchester will be soon!

  • Anonymous

    Hello - I am currently considering doing the CIPD Level 7 Diploma in HRD, but have heard a rumour that the syllabus is being updated and is due to change at the end of this year.  Please could you confirm if this is the case (and if so, what is changing content-wise) and whether you believe it would be better to crack on with the current syllabus, or wait for the new one.  Much appreciated!