As most HR professionals already know, there are numerous reasons to obtain HR certification. The obvious reasons are money and career motivated, which is reason enough in itself. What, if any, other reasons are there for HR certification? From commitment to your career, to a desire to better learn your craft, I will propose several personal, intrinsically motivated reasons one should pursue HR certification.
While HR certification shows commitment to your employer, or prospective employer, it can also help solidify your own commitment to your career. It’s going beyond the standard HR B.A. degree. By pursuing HR certification, you are committing to reviewing your knowledge every three years, in order to maintain certification. This commitment, should solidify your investment in your career, and (hopefully) give you a sense of permanence, pride and accomplishment.
By earning a PHR, SPHR, GPHR, PHR/CA or SPHR/CA, you put yourself in a position to meet other HR professionals. Networking with others in your industry is an important part of leading a satisfying career. Not only does it open up more opportunities, but it allows you to discuss relevant issues with, and get worthwhile advice from, contemporaries who truly understand the topics at hand. For those who work as independent contractors and in small to mid-size companies, who often only have one HR person, this can be a godsend.
One of the main reasons HR professionals are encouraged to get HR certification, is to stand out to prospective and current employers. Other than helping you land a great HR gig, or promotion, it shows everyone at your workplace that you are serious, dedicated, and self-motivated, which in turn puts you in a great position to take on a leadership role. Beyond a bigger paycheck, leadership in the workplace should make you feel confident in yourself, and improve your overall work experience.
The final, and perhaps most compelling reason for acquiring HR certification is to educate yourself on the most current HR policies and information. In the ever changing world of HR, in order to consider yourself a competent professional, you have to constantly educate yourself on up-to-date HR practices. The most practical way of doing this is obtaining HR certification. By agreeing to take a tri-annual recertification examination, you are forcing yourself to always be in the know on the constantly evolving topic of HR.
HR certification is something everyone with a career in HR should consider. Monetarily and for your own personal satisfaction, it just makes sense. Commitment to yourself and your employer, networking, taking on leadership roles, and continuing to learn about your field are all good personal reasons to seriously consider HR certification. Throw in more opportunities for jobs, and promotions, and there isn’t any good reason not to pursue HR certification.