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The Association of Credit Professionals

The importance of continuing to learn and improve

The ACP has always believed in the importance of continuing to learn and improve what we do. Striving to do things better is the only way to stay ahead of the game. Learning lets us do this both as individuals and as a group.

As we are our members, it is important that we do everything that we can to encourage, assist, support and in some instances guide our members so that they can achieve their goals – your goals are our goals after all.

2014 will be our year, where we strive to meet the needs of an ever growing membership. We will launch more road shows around the country. We know that these are worthwhile from the feedback received from previous road shows. It enables members and non members alike to meet, discuss and debate what is important to them. To form alliances and networks that they can call upon to assist their businesses. Speakers from the profession to the profession will share ideas and viewpoints. These road shows will be nationwide so look out for the dates to be advertised.

As an association, we offer our members to opportunity to obtain accreditation particular to their own abilities and ambitions. In a demanding job market, a CV needs to stand out, as an employer I want to see that applicants have a love of our profession and a desire to improve their knowledge outside of the work place. Too often candidates see credit management as a stepping stone into accounts, finance or even just into the business. They believe that once they are through the door, they can decide to chop and change direction, to the detriment of the credit management team. Credit management is a cornerstone of any business and needs to be taken seriously. I am more likely to recruit someone who has taken the initiative to demonstrate their commitment to the profession than someone with straight A’s at GCSE, A Levels or even a solid degree but who has no clear idea of the direction they wish to take.

The ultimate accolade for me is the Fellowship Award, which is given either on exam merit or extensive experience within the profession. This is why we shall be re-launching the Fellowship Awards this year. Paul Taylor, our chair, has asked me to chair the Fellowship committee and along with Rob Sands as vice chair we are committed to driving this forward. The aim of the committee will be to ensure that our fellows are the cream of the crop but that as an association we celebrate our diverse membership. We will seek to be inclusive and to offer guidance to those who may have not quite reached the standard required to attain fellowship but who have the ambition and drive to do so. We understand that different roles within our profession bring different challenges and in turn lead to different members obtaining a wide breadth of experiences; we do not want to limit our fellows to senior managers when in our diverse profession this is not always attained but by not gaining a senior management role should not preclude professionals from being admitted as fellows. Let’s sweep away the old boy networks and the feeling of elitism and view members are individuals who bring their own qualities to the profession. We will seek to celebrate our profession and open our doors to all credit professionals who wish to contribute to an association whose focus is unwaveringly on its members.

Paul Taylor was appointed chair in January 2014, and will bring fresh ideas to the association. Paul is supported by a now extensive management team and most importantly by our new president Steve Savva. What a great year it’s going to be, so goodbye 2013 it was fun, but hello 2014 because it is always onwards and upwards because together we can take on the world.

Teresa Callaghan FACP
Executive vice chair
Association of Credit Professionals

 Posted on 13th January 2014 by Lauren Piper