Any learning journey is exciting to begin with as one visualizes the end state of accomplishment. This was no different as SHRM SCP was a prestigious certification and the curiosity was also about the kind of learning. The length of experience as an HR professional led me to believe that the journey would be a walk in the park. The journey began with the books being delivered with a good 4 months to go before the exam. Given my “over” confidence, the tendency was to postpone starting preparations. The availability of SHRM learning portal prodded me to begin the learning and the pre-test was the curtain-raiser of the things to come. The test gave a sense of the difficulty level and the scores were low enough to make necessary corrections to the confidence. The SHRM portal was an extremely useful resource as the contents was followed by brief assessments which helped me build confidence brick by brick.
With a month to go for the test, I helped myself to post-test on the portal. The post-test results were not encouraging, raising doubts about emerging successful. Discussions and conversations with those who have gone through the exam raised my anxiety levels. It pushed me into spending more time, with just about 15 days left for the test. I also realized that it was not only about knowing the content, but also about practicing to stay focused for the whole duration of the exam (4 hours). I therefore took the post-test 4 times, just to get used to the rigor of the exam day. The last 2 days before the exam was focused on recap of learning and building confidence. The exam day was a wonderful experience and all the preparations paid off; I was able to focus till the last minute and, I also ensured that I used every minute of the 4 hours to run through the answers again for a quick review.
What worked well for me was the preparation done on the learning portal. The content is crisp and is followed by a quiz, which helps in testing your knowledge immediately. I would urge aspirants to read through the content more than once. I had used the flash card extensively to revise the concepts. Identify the areas where you need improvement (through post-test marks) and focus on those specific areas. The challenge really is in identifying the right answer between two probable answers, from the multiple options, which are very close. I realized that one should not answer the question from ones experience and rather apply conceptual knowledge to narrow down to the right answer,
The SHRM SCP is an ideal test of HR concepts and situational judgements and brings the best out of an HR professional. The mantra to succeeding is disciplined preparation and repeated practice. The whole journey of learning was extremely enriching and strengthened my concepts and broadened my perspectives. All through this journey, the SHRM team was always available to lend support.