Progression pathways

Those who work as regulatory affairs professionals are fortunate to have a wide variety of career choices within the profession. In order to be successful, regulatory professionals must make sure that they keep up to date and continually hone their skills and knowledge.

TOPRA supports members in this by providing a Life Long Learning (LLL) scheme and encouraging all members to follow a process of identifying their learning needs and how these might be addressed, undertaking learning by whatever means is most suitable (for example, reading, mentoring, courses), evaluating the effectiveness of that learning and recording this activity as part of a LLL record.

TOPRA supplies training courses, conferences and networking opportunities that help to provide the technical information and skills development needed by regulatory professionals at all stages in their careers.

Five key stages

Although every individual career pathway is different, TOPRA has identified five key ‘stages’ that can be applied to any regulatory career:

  • Exploring: people who work in administrative roles in regulatory affairs or who are investigating regulatory as a career are at the ‘exploring’ stage. Even those who work in a related area (eg marketing, patents) often need training that explain the regulatory context– our ‘Basics’ courses are ideal for this stage.
  • Establishing: people who have decided on regulatory affairs as a career – maybe have gained their first job - and are building a firm foundation in the principles, are at this stage. Our ‘Foundation’ courses (such as the Introductory Courses in spring and autumn) are ideal for this stage.
  • Consolidating: this is the stage for those who have a commitment to regulatory affairs and who are now building expertise in a specific range of areas or projects – typically having about 2-5 years experience. Our ‘CRED’ programmes are tailored towards this stage.
  • Driving: suitable for those who have worked in the field for a while and want to make their mark in the regulatory profession. They may be taking on management responsibility, running a business or becoming an in-house ‘expert’ on an area or even moving into a related area like HTA/PV. Our ‘Masterclasses’ and ‘Horizons’ (current awareness courses and conferences), are developed to meet their needs.
  • Influencing: this is the stage for those who have reached the level of senior Directors or Vice Presidents - often Fellowship of TOPRA too. They have strategic roles and play on the wider stage, influencing new legislation maybe through trade bodies and other external organisations. Our ‘Roundtables’ and Fellows Dinners, as well as the Annual Symposium, will give them the opportunity to look at future developments and debate the issues.

From 2014 all TOPRA training and education offerings will be linked to these stages, making it even simpler to plan personal development programmes for yourself or for your staff.

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