HRPA CEO Bill Greenhalgh delivers the opening speech on the theme of HR professionalization at the 2016 Annual Conference on Wed, January 20.
2015: Year in Review
It’s been one year since HRPA introduced its updated HR competency framework and three new designations that test an updated body of knowledge, and the ability to apply that knowledge, at three levels of human resources practice: entry (CHRP), professional (CHRL), and executive (CHRE).
So what’s been the reaction from stakeholders?
The most dramatic impact has been on HRPA’s membership rolls which jumped six per cent (with member retention climbing to 91 %) since we launched the designations last November. As of the close of the 2015 fiscal year, HRPA now has 22,262 members.
Those numbers illustrate the strong support HRPA members have for our efforts to modernize a certification framework (including differentiating designations for different career stages, a more structured professional experience requirement and a jurisprudence exam to certify legal knowledge) that hadn’t been updated in 15 years and the value they see in the new designations.
The reaction from the business community has been equally encouraging. We surveyed senior business leaders asking them how the new framework and designations would affect their view of HR – over 56% answered “Very Favourably.”
And the response from Ontario post-secondary schools offering HR programs has also been positive.
From the college perspective, previously, if you didn’t have a degree it was a challenge to earn a designation and find a job. Now, you can graduate with an HR diploma, pass the CKE 1 exam and you’re ready to practice at the CHRP level. The colleges (and their HR students) welcome the change and this is borne out by the numbers of new CHRPs that have come directly out of colleges recently.
And at the degree level we have worked with about a dozen universities and degree-granting colleges who now have business department representatives meeting regularly to discuss our competency model and what they need to do to ensure students get the education to meet it. In fact, a primary reason why the schools have responded so well to our new competency model is because it’s well defined and spells out what HR professionals need to know and do. We don’t tell them how to teach it but at the end of the day the schools understand that students need this knowledge and this capability to earn the designations and practice HR effectively.
New HRPA strategic plan
The updated competency framework and HR designations join last year’s passage of the Registered Human Resources Professionals Act, 2013 (which gives HRPA government sanction to regulate the profession in the public interest) as cornerstones on which to build HRPA’s new strategic plan.
This new plan represents the next phase of HRPA’s work to “professionalize” the HR profession, including work towards a common global body of knowledge and information campaigns to ensure everyone—HR professionals, government, business and the public—understands that HR is a genuine profession with unique skills and capabilities that bring value to organizations through people strategies.
2016 Annual Conference
And finally, if you haven’t yet registered for HRPA’s 2016 Annual Conference, I highly urge you to do so soon. This year’s event is shaping up to be another blockbuster, with eight keynotes, more than 150 professional development sessions, plus Canada’s largest HR trade show.
This year’s keynote line-up includes economist Benjamin Tal examining the global macroeconomic forces impacting our economy and the link between economics and HR; CBC broadcaster Rex Murphy discussing issues of the day; Olympic gold medalist Clara Hughes leading a roundtable on workplace mental health; and former Moist frontman David Usher on how you can learn creativity and bring it to everything you do.
As a special pre-conference bonus, delegates are invited to register for an extra day (Tuesday) of panel discussions, including The Business Case for Hiring Experienced Workers and Human Rights and Creed: What you need to know.
I hope to see you all at the conference in January.
From all of us at HRPA, have a safe and happy holiday and a prosperous 2016.