While a new concept in the extractives industry, Continuing Professional Development (CPD) is now a key element in maintaining industry roles and competency certificates, including the A and B quarry manager’s certificates. By HUGH DE LACY and ALAN TITCHALL.
This is an updated version of a previously published online article.
It’s the sort of practice you associate with the professions – doctors, for example, do it throughout their careers – but Continuing Professional Development (CPD) has been extended to Certificate of Competence (CoC) holders in the extractives industry in the wake of the country’s new health and safety regime.
While there are quite a few CPD schemes in operation in other industries, this extractives initiative is one of the few in the world that extends down to ‘supervisor’ level. Requirements came into force on January 1 this year.
WorkSafe defines CPD as: “The systematic maintenance, improvement and broadening of knowledge, understanding and skills, and the development of personal qualities necessary to undertake duties throughout a CoC holder’s working life.”
Some 16 roles
Government safety body WorkSafe has gazetted requirements for 16 roles ranging from senior site executives needing to do 120 hours of CPD over their five-year term of the certificate, to winding engine drivers who have to do a minimum of 30 hours over the same period.
“Learning must be undertaken across a relevant range of topics within the required competencies in each five-year period. A minimum of two thirds of total hours each year must be formal learning. Up to a third of total hours can be informal learning. What is considered formal and informal learning is found here on pages 5 and 6 [of the Continuing Professional Development guidelines for Extractives].
“CoC holders who hold more than one CoC in the same category only need to complete requirements for the most senior CoC they hold. For example, a holder of a B and A grade quarry manager’s CoC need only complete the A grade quarry manager’s requirements.”
Formal and informal components
Formal learning includes attending or delivering seminars and workshops, completing training courses, attending industry conferences, studying for tertiary qualifications, and publishing peer-reviewed papers in industry publications (such as Q&M). This will credit you with 10 hours if not previously presented at a conference, or five hours for a paper that has been presented. Presenting a paper at a conference awards you eight hours for each presentation. For publishing industry ‘articles’ in a magazine, such as Q&M and Contractor, you can earn a maximum of four hours a year.
Informal learning includes reading technical articles, conference papers and publications such as this one, attending field trips, delivering or receiving non-formal in-house training – such as learning to operate a particular machine – reviewing principal hazard management plans and participating in conducting reportable incident investigations. Reading technical and conference papers in Q&M and Contractor magazines will provide you with a maximum of two hours a year. Just attending an industry conference, such as QuarryNZ, will award you with a maximum of two hours for each day. This is in addition to the hours claimed for attendance at conference ‘workshops’.
Additional hours earned in one year can be counted towards the following year’s total, but not beyond that. It is important for certificate holders to complete a certain amount of the required hours every year, as they are not allowed to do them all in the last year before the certificate expires.
WorkSafe both sets and administers these formal and informal CPD requirements. You can check them out on the WorkSafe website. On the left side of the home page is a list of Focus Areas. Click on High Hazards. On the left is a list of High Hazards – click on Extractives. Click on NZ Mining Board of Examiners. Still on the left hand side click Continuing Professional Development. You will get a list that includes Continuing Professional Development Guidelines of Extractives.
CPD hours have to be recorded in a log-book provided by WorkSafe. This log-book system is still being set up and eventually it’ll go live online, but at the moment it’s a paper system.
Each CoC holder is responsible for recording their own CPD activities, and needs to keep evidence of formal activity participation in case they are audited.
A percentage of log-books is selected and checked randomly every year for audit, and log-books will also be checked when the holder applies for the renewal of their certificate.
“Because this is new to everyone, we are currently working closely with those who are sending in their log-book entries by checking each entry and providing feedback and information,” Ariadna Motus, WorkSafe’s high hazard project manager, told Q&M.
“The board secretariat is working with holders to assist, and also holding workshops to explain CPD and answer questions. We are closely monitoring how it is working.”