CPD - continuing professional development

CPD is ongoing work-related learning, which enables staff to keep their technical skills, business skills, and industry knowledge up to date. The process is driven by the employee rather than the employer and involves:

  • Assessing learning needs
  • Carrying out a range of CPD activities
  • Reflecting on and documenting the skills, knowledge and experience gained

How it benefits your business

CPD helps staff to develop their existing skills and knowledge, boosting their confidence and credibility. It also encourages staff to follow changes in legislation, technology and working practice - this equips them with tools to cope positively with change. As employees excel in their roles their job satisfaction increases. Employers discover that when they support CPD, the performance of the whole finance team improves.

AAT's CPD events and resources

To help your staff with their professional development we run CPD courses and masterclasses on key areas of accounting and finance. These are open to everyone - AAT members and non-members. If you are an AAT accredited employer you can get discounts on these courses.

Search AAT events

Each year we run an AAT Conference for two days of discussion and debate around the major issues facing accountancy today - featuring a keynote speech, expert speakers, workshops, sessions and peer-networking. This event is open to everyone.

For AAT members we run branch networking events. We also provide AAT members and accredited employers with a huge range of online CPD resources. These include award-winning e-learning, CPD interactive hub, tests, podcasts, blogs, videos, webinars, articles and forums. These are free and will enable your staff to fit in learning at a time that suits them.


AAT's CPD events

  AAT's online CPD resources        
  • CPD mastercourses
  • CPD workshops
  • AAT conference
  • CPD webinars
  • Local AAT branch meetings
  • Connect events



  • CPD e-learning
  • Excel e-learning
  • CPD interactive hub
  • Technical and ethical advice
  • AAT podcasts
  • Career resources
  • UK Budget resources
  • AAT forums
  • AAT Comment - industry news and opinion
  • Accounting Technician magazine
  • AAT social media

Our CPD policy for AAT members

At AAT we are committed to the high standards of our members. To achieve this, one of the conditions of AAT affiliate and professional membership is mandatory CPD.

This ensures that we uphold our responsibility to employers and the accounting industry that AAT members are competent, confident and continually developing in their ability to perform their roles.


How to support your AAT members

If you're not an AAT accredited employer

AAT member requirements
Your AAT professional members must follow AAT's personal CPD route. They will need to keep records of their learning and regularly review their progress against our CPD cycle. AAT's CPD policy is not based on a set number of hours or credits. Instead it is measured by the outcomes and benefits that members derive from doing CPD - it is about the quality, rather than the quantity of the CPD.

How staff should record their CPD
Your AAT professional members can access our online CPD Record tool through their MyAAT account. This makes recording CPD quick and simple and keeps all information relating to their career and development in one place. Your staff can use the tool to plan and record their learning, reflect on progress, and it is designed to reflect AAT's CPD cycle, so using it will help them meet our CPD requirements.


If you are an AAT Accredited Employer

AAT member requirements
Your AAT professional members will automatically meet their mandatory CPD requirements, simply by following your organisation's learning and development programme. This means they will not have to keep separate CPD records and submit them to AAT. 

How staff should record their CPD
In many cases, the documentation you already use will be sufficient. However, we expect copies of appraisals and training and development forms to be centrally collated as part of your organisation's management of training and development. We conduct randomly selected monitoring and support visits to ensure accredited employers are meeting our standards. If you are selected for monitoring we will ask to see a copy of your training policy documents or any documents related to staff CPD.

The CPD process is directed by the employee rather than the employer. The example below may offer a starting point for staff:

Covering the period:

Key dates What did you do?   Why?     What did you learn from this? Any further action? 












Planned outcome

Where do I want to be by the end of this period?

What do I want/need to learn?

What will I do to achieve this?

What will my success criteria be?

Target dates for review and completion



CPD activities

Work-based learning Professional activity
  • Planned coaching or mentoring from colleagues or specialists
  • Discussions or planning with colleagues
  • Being a representative on a committee
  • Special project work or job secondments
  • Work shadowing
  • Supervising colleagues or students
  • Expanding the employee's role - new assignments
  • Job rotation
  • Local AAT branch meetings
  • AAT events
  • Career events
  • Membership of an accounting or finance interest group
  • Mentoring
  • Networking
Formal/educational Self-directed learning
  • AAT mastercourses, courses and conferences
  • E-learning modules
  • Studying towards other qualifications
  • Research
  • Writing articles/papers/blog posts
  • AAT webinars
  • Audio podcasts
  • Reading or research into relevant topics - books, journals, online articles
  • Using social media as a source of finance and accounting news
  • Voluntary work


Become an AAT Accredited Employer

We're here to help

If you would like further information or have any queries about CPD for your AAT members, please email our Account Management team at regionalaccountmanagers@aat.org.uk or call us on +44 (0)20 7397 3009,