LCS CPD assessor John Homewood has listed these five tips, based on frequent responses to CPD practitioners who have submitted A3 plans for approval.
1. Add Completion or Aim Dates
Ensure that you add completion or aim dates to your Countermeasures to work towards. These will help you timetable and order the Activities you then develop.
2. Utilise all fields
Try to utilise all the fields available to you. There are three fields under the Practice, Learning and Communicating areas. Making the most of these will help you develop more meaningful Countermeasures and subsequently the detail in Activities.
3. Consistent Countermeasures
See that the Countermeasures you create are consistent with all the Practicing, Learning and Communicating Challenges you’ve outlined and the overall Goals & Targets that you have set yourself. In that, ensure that your Countermeasures address both the corporate and personal challenges you have identified. You may wish to make reference to the Strengths you have outlined to fine-tune your Countermeasures.
4. Using Countermeasures
It is tempting to employ Countermeasures and actions you had already intended to make then work back to fill in the Challenges to suit, bypassing the flow of analysis that led to the Countermeasures being set. Try to avoid doing this, or, see that you re-visit the motivations behind those originally intended actions and reflect that in the Challenge statements.
You will get feedback comments on your A3 Plan and possible corrective actions that address the logic of your submission from your Assessor, using the context of your Background, Strengths and Challenges.
You can re-submit a corrected A3 Plan before Approval by your Assessor. On approval of the A3 Plan you will be able to access the Activity fields where you can create specific actions against each Countermeasure. You will also be able make a review your progress against these actions and at an appropriate interval request endorsement of the progress review (of a total of three).
If your plan is, for example, for a whole year, you may chose to review at 4, 8 and 12 months. An endorsement of the final (or 12 month) progress check record then closes the whole CPD cycle associated with your current A3 Plan.