I am very pleased to share that the interest in and implementation of the SHRM competency-based certification continues to progress exceptionally well. We have finalized the test questions and will conduct the pilot exams for the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP™) and SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP™) in October—and the interest has been overwhelming. We initially planned to invite 1,000 individuals for the pilot, but eventually had to close registration at 1,700 and regretfully had to turn away hundreds more. We encourage those for whom we did not have space to sit for the first official exams, which will be offered in May 2015.
Thanks to all 1,700 of the pilot exams volunteers. Their efforts will assist us greatly as we fine tune the competency-based certification exam for the 2015 launch. Since we announced the SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP credentials, we have engaged thousands of our members in discussions about the value of the competency-based certification and we have heard from thousands of others who are asking for more information and how to obtain these letters.
Just last week, SHRM Board Chair Bette Francis and I were in Dallas speaking to a gathering of members about the benefits of competency-based certification. We received strong affirmation for our decision to pursue competency-based certifications and we were pleased to hear members make it clear that they understood why this is important. That point was clear. We were also pleased that the follow-up conversations revolved around “how” to get the new certification and made it clear that they believe competencies are critical to success in meeting businesses’ expectations of the HR professional. The Dallas event is one of more than 60 speaking engagements given and planned with our chapters across the country—from Sacramento, to Chicago, to Maine, and Kentucky, and all places in between—the responses have always been the same: “This is great! It’s exactly what the profession needs, and it’s exactly what my HR team and I need.” We will also continue to conduct webcasts.
Along with SHRM chapters, we have our college and university partners eager to begin teaching the SHRM certification prep courses to students and HR professionals. Knowing that the SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP were created in response to the business community’s desire for more outcome-focused practices from HR professionals makes now a very exciting time for our profession. I encourage you to attend one of the chapter or state council events where SHRM will be discussing competency-based certification and, if you can’t make one of the events, please check out the shrmcertification.org site. There you can download and read the SHRM Body of Competency and Knowledge (SHRM BoCK)—the framework for the exam. Already, more than 8,000 of your peers have requested information so they can pursue SHRM’s CP or SCP certifications.
Hank Jackson is president and CEO of the Society for Human Resource Management.