February 28, 2020

Celebrating a moment in time with the completion of CDANZ Professional Standards for members

There have been many significant events in the history of CDANZ, beginning with its incorporation in 1997, and most recently culminating on 2nd March 2021 with the acceptance by members of the remit to make significant changes to Entry Level Qualifications and Member Pathways. This is the final element of the Professional Standards and completes the journey of the Professionalism Project born in 2013.

The Entry Level Qualifications and Member Pathways element now combine with:

  • the revamped Code of Ethics in its succinct and accessible one-pager
  • the revised Competency Framework,  which provides a robust framework for members and qualification providers, and gives assurance to the public about the competencies a CDANZ career practitioner possesses
  • a renewed Continuing Professional Development process, tailored to individual member needs, and
  • practice guidelines and resources as part of our pātaka kōrero, developed to enhance our members’ professional practice.

The CDANZ Professional Standards are critical to support and promote a professional career development culture within New Zealand and to promote quality career development services. Our new alternative pathways will now allow those involved in a diverse range of career work to become part of the CDANZ community. Not only is this desirable to clarify the training and development expected of members providing career development services, but it will also facilitate the growth of our association.

Having joined the Professionalism Project in 2013 and led it from 2017, I, Caroline Sandford, am incredibly proud of the journey, set and driven by Dr Val O’Reilly. There have been many contributors over the years, with members joining, contributing and moving on. However—including Val and myself—Julie Thomas, Robyn Bailey, Amanda Smidt and Hilary Tomkins have gifted significant voluntary time and hard work to ensure that the Professional Standards are based on thorough research, consultation with members and other stakeholders, and scrutinisation by international experts. Thank you to the National Executive for their support, and to Lauren Hughes, our National Development Manager, who has been key to bringing the final stage together. Thank you to all who have contributed, been part of working groups, those who have challenged, given feedback, and participated in presentations, webinars, special interest groups, pilots and straw polls.

I would like to acknowledge and thank Dr Dale Furbish, whose leadership in the establishment and direction of CDANZ (then CPANZ), and in the education of many of our career development practitioners, has created a culture of professionalism. I have been privileged to be in the field at a time when Dale brought an international perspective and many international ‘stars’ in the career field to our shores, enabling us to benefit from the latest thinking, research and theory that was being developed internationally.

So, let’s take a moment to celebrate this amazing achievement. There is always much work to do in a voluntary association. But there is also a need to stop and take stock of the enormous effort and positive outcome that has been fuelled by the passion for our industry, and for those we serve.

Caroline Sandford is an Associate of The Career Development Company


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Whatever stage you are at in your career journey, making decisions about your future can often be overwhelming. Our services will help bring clarity and support, so that you can effectively navigate the next step in your journey to achieve your desired outcome.

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The Career Development Company offers specialist expertise and support to education providers, helping them design, develop, and deliver career development programmes and services.  Students and trainees also need support to navigate transitions between education, training, and employment.

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The Career Development Company is an approved All-of-Government provider of HR-Career Development Services. We are confident our career development services will benefit your organisation, managers, and staff.  Our career development expertise complements existing management and HR/OD functions. By taking an active role in your staff’s careers, you can create an environment of trust, openness, and increased engagement and satisfaction.

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The Career Development Company is an advocate for professionalism in the careers industry and for the valuable role that professional associations and bodies play. As a team we are currently members of CDANZ, CATE, HRNZ, ICF, CDAA, CEAV, AI Forum, Women AI (WAI) Forum, Maori and Pasifika Career Practitioners Network, National Council of Women New Zealand, Office of Ethnic Communities Women to Women (W2W) Group. We are committed to supporting practitioners to continue to develop their competencies and to work ethically for positive outcomes for their clients.

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  • ... and much more!

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