Professional Registration: Why?

I first became a LIANZA and Te Rōpū Whakahau member in the early 1990s to meet others in similar circumstances and as part of my ongoing career development. I was studying for my post-grad library qualification, was new to the profession, and I was working sole-charge at Awataha Marae library. It was significant for me to feel as if I belonged.

I continued to be a LIANZA  and Te Rōpū Whakahau member throughout my library career for the same reasons I’ve just outlined. But in February 2007 I left libraries to develop a training and recognition programme for over 9000 mystery shoppers in Australia and New Zealand. And at this time the practicalities of professional registration were still being fine-tuned (the scheme was introduced in July 2007).

Now that I’ve returned, I’ve re-joined LIANZA and am considering whether to become professionally registered. I wouldn’t have given it a second thought prior to leaving libraries, but I now find myself weighing up the benefits of what professional registration means to me personally.

According to LIANZA, professional registration will provide me with:

  • ongoing professional development
    A great reason, but I feel I’m able to provide a significant part of my own ongoing professional development through the curation of The Daily News and being involved in other ways.
  • a framework for employers to help coach you
    As I am currently self-employed, this isn’t of benefit to me.
  • an assurance for future employers that you meet the standards… for professional library and information work
    This applies regardless of my employment status. As a self-employed individual providing project management to libraries being professionally registered would be a point of distinction from other consultants. How valuable this is would still need to be tested but I believe it is a rare thing to find a consultant meeting recognised standards in both the library and project management professions. And as someone who may consider permanent or fixed-term library employment in the future, professional registration at least gets me a foot in the door.
  • international benchmarking and recognition of your qualifications if you wish to work overseas
    I can’t think of any additional benefits to those already outlined above.

Unfortunately the benefits aren’t overwhelming, so if you can think of any others, please let me know. 🙂

On the other hand, the benefits are enough for me to take the next step – find out what is required – for all I know I might not qualify (do I need to be employed in a library?) or it might be a cinch.

Find out what I discover about the professional registration process in my next blog post.

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4 Comments

  1. Anon says:

    Living in provincial NZ I do not feel that I have benefited in any way from my professional registration over the last 3 years. In fact I am considering letting it lapse. There are no local LIANZA meetings (3 hours drive to the closest) and I have no desire to work overseas. Through my employer I am doing ongoing training so why do I need to pay several hundreds of dollars for nothing?

    1. Sally says:

      Have you found completing the journal worthwhile, even if just from a personal perspective? I think I would find this useful to keep track of what I’m learning and how it could be applied. Of course I can do this without becoming registered, but who ever finds time to do stuff like that, if it isn’t a requirement 🙂

      My continuation of this journey will be posted here tomorrow, keep an eye out for it.

  2. Anonymous says:

    I’m pleased to see some discussion about the pros & cons about professional registration. It isn’t going to work for everyone, and people do need to weigh it up from a variety of angles.

    Up until now I have consciously decided not to professionally register as there were no benefits for me personally and I was wary of the teething problems of a new scheme, but now that my new employer is willing to support it and there do appear to be some networking advantages to me (being in a new part of NZ), I have now rejoined LIANZA (in addition to TRW membership and in place of an ALIA membership) and I am seriously looking into the scheme. I’m looking forward to hearing how you get on 😉

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