CILIP have recently published a new ‘Professional Knowledge and Skills Base‘ for uses including:
- Self-assessment tool for planning personal and professional development
- Demonstrating your skill set to employers
- Framework for in-house learning and development
- CILIP’s own course validation and standards processes.
CILIP are set to back this up with “some guides to different sectors” to show how the PKSB applies to different library and information roles across the various industries they appear in.
However, do such guides really help members identify their expertise or ignore the wider trend in a period of austerity and redundancies?
I would argue that these high-level guides are very useful to set out the areas involved in a professional identity, which can then be filled out with more detailed knowledge and skills specific to a job. It should also help with the mapping of learning outcomes from development activities to ensure they are indeed improving knowledge or skills.
The problem may come with the proliferation of professional organizations as a result of disillusionment with the cost of professional membership against the independent opportunities available via social media and local activities. The other issue is that as professional boundaries break down with new roles I would marry skill sets from, amongst others, CILIP, LPI and CIPD. As such, perhaps the most interesting thing is the variation in approach between bodies.