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CPD 2023 Requirements

CPD when you're working in industry


Published: 07 Jul 2023

ICAEW has a wealth of resources that can help members working in industry stay up to date with developments in finance and business, while at the same time ensuring that you’re meeting ICAEW’s CPD requirements.

The revision of ICAEW’s Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Regulations aims to maintain trust in the profession, which is under increasing amounts of scrutiny, and support members in developing their skills and knowledge.

Lifelong learning is vital to succeed in your career and deliver effective business partnering, and the upcoming regulatory changes clarify the minimum number of hours of CPD that ICAEW believes is needed for your role. The changes also introduce a new requirement that ethics must form part of your CPD each year.

How much CPD do you need to complete?

From 1 November, the amount of CPD you are required to complete each year depends on the type of work you undertake and the organisation you work for.

The regulations divide industry roles into three not-in-practice categories. The category tells you how many hours of CPD you need complete and what proportion of those hours must be ‘verifiable’ – ie for which you can provide independent evidence.

The default is category 3, which for members working in industry requires 20 hours of CPD each year, five of which must be verifiable. The regulations then define which activities or organisations would place you in a higher category. 

minimum number
of hours

Minimum number of
verifiable hours

Category 1



Category 2



Category 3



Are you in category 1?

Category 1 is reserved for the most senior roles at organisations with the greatest potential to harm the public if ICAEW members are not appropriately skilled. This includes, for example:

  • large charities (assets over £1bn);
  • large pension funds (assets over £1bn or 10,000 members);
  • government departments;
  • public interest entities; and
  • public sector organisations that are subject to a major local audit. 

Senior roles at these organisations that would place you into category 1 include:

  • members of the management board;
  • CEO/CFO/FD or other head/chief/director role;
  • chief internal auditor;
  • group financial controller;
  • members of the audit committee;
  • accounting or statutory officers (in the public sector); an
  • pension fund trustees (that are paid).

Are you in category 2?

Category 2 roles in industry fall into two broad camps. The first are management level positions at the high-risk organisations outlined above. This includes:

  • financial controllers;
  • financial reporting managers;
  • other manager level roles; and
  • internal audit roles.

This means a financial controller at a large pension fund would fall into category 2, as would an internal auditor at a public interest entity.

The second group of roles are those who hold senior-level positions at organisations that are considered to pose some risk of harm to the public if ICAEW members are not appropriately skilled. These organisations include:

  • large companies (as defined by the Companies Act);
  • charities (assets less than £1bn);
  • pension funds (assets less than £1bn or fewer than 10,000 members); and
  • public sector organisations that are not subject to a major local audit. 

So the CFO of a small charity would fall into category 2, as would the FD of a manufacturer with 350 employees and a turnover of £45m.

If you’re not sure which category applies to you, ICAEW has created an online CPD self-assessment tool where you spend a few minutes answering questions about your role and it will determine which CPD category you fall into.

CPD learning resources for you

Professional development is not restricted to activities focused on technical accounting or finance. The development of soft skills, such as communication, leadership and change management, are equally considered professional development.

CPD can include a wide range of activities, including:

  • listening to podcasts,
  • receiving coaching,
  • watching webinars,
  • reading articles,
  • learning from colleagues, and
  • attending courses and events.

For an activity to contribute to your CPD requirements, you simply need to show in your record how it is relevant to your role and how it has helped meet your learning needs. 

For CPD to count towards your verifiable hours, you must also include evidence that it took place. This evidence must be factually accurate, corroborated by an independent source and in a format that can be included in your CPD record.

Included in your ICAEW membership

As an ICAEW member you now have access to the majority of faculty and community content which in previous years was paid for. There are more than 30 ICAEW communities which curate and create content focused on specific industries or professional specialisms. Whether you’re looking for information on agriculture or construction, healthcare or tourism, there’s support for you.

In recent months, the Small and Micro Business Community has launched a webinar series focusing on the benefits of digitalisation, while the Construction and Real Estate Community hosted an update on ESG reporting for real estate.

You can also access all of ICAEW’s business content at icaew.com/business, which includes sections on:

Then there’s technical support produced by Corporate Reporting and Tax Faculties. Examples of what you can find, include:

Finally, don't forget ICAEW Insights, where you can stay up to date with the latest developments across finance and business. The section also includes regular 'specials' where we focus on a specific topic, such as access to finance

As part of the new online CPD record, launching in November, ICAEW will be providing a tool that will verify engagement with articles, videos and podcasts on icaew.com for CPD purposes. Joining any of ICAEW’s numerous free faculty and community webinars could also count as verifiable CPD, so long as they are relevant to your role.

The CPD changes don’t come in until 1 November, but that doesn’t mean you have to wait until then to start thinking about your learning needs and planning out some CPD activities.

One area where you can get a heads start is on the ethics requirement. The Ethics CPD Course has already launched, and you can start completing the course modules in your own time and add your certificates to your online CPD record when it opens after the 1 November.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about CPD, don’t hesitate to contact us. Phonelines and webchat are available between 09:00-17:00 (UK time) Monday to Friday and 10:00-17:00 on Wednesdays (excluding UK bank holidays).

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