Benefits of an HR Certification

Benefits of an HR Certification

Having received my master’s in human resources management, I can confidently say that my studying and completion of the SHRM-SCP, PHR, and CEBS exams provided me with a deep level of HR and business knowledge that is comparable to graduate-level coursework.

When I started my career in HR, I had a traditional and overly simplified understanding of my role as an HR professional. I perceived the HR function as administrative and restricted to onboarding/offboarding, learning and development, policy creation & enforcement, and organizational compensation and benefit programs. While these remain foundational components of HR, these do not paint the full story of Human Resources in today’s global context.

Early in my career, before obtaining my masters, I began to study for my first HR designation (PHR). My mind opened to the complexities of the HR function, and the strategic partnership HR performs throughout organizations. Not only was I surprised by the amount of case law I studied for my PHR, but I was also pleasantly surprised by the amount of operational business content that served as a core requirement for HR certification.

A few examples of business content for the PHR and SHRM-SCP exams covered:

•    Financial literacy and analysis

•    Strategic planning & goal attainment

•    Interpreting critical business metrics

•    Cross-Departmental strategies

•    Organizational Interventions

•    Business plans and methods for achievement

•    Critical evaluation through data analytics

•    Data security & business continuity

•    Organizational risk management

Unfortunately, if HR professionals do not have a business degree, an accounting background or frequent exposure to operational business units, they may lack critical business concepts covered through an HR certification. A certification through SHRM or HRCI ensures that HR professionals are business literate and prepared to enhance organizational effectiveness.

I frequently refer to my exam study materials when making informed business decisions. My certifications through HRCI and SHRM deepened my knowledge as an HR professional, helped me become a well-rounded employee, and ensured that my business acumen is up-to-speed with other business leaders.

Benefits I’ve received from HR certifications:

•    A full context of the HR profession

•    Critical business acumen

•    Career advancement

•    Credibility from senior business leaders 

•    Confidence in my skills as an HR professional

•    Study materials and life-long learning resources

If you are questioning if an HR certification is right for you, please feel free to reach out to me with questions about my journey. My name is Tanner Lesley, and I have a Master’s in Human Resources Management and my SHRM-SCP, PHR, and CEBS certifications.

Original Photo (prior to edits) by Raj Eiamworakul on Unsplash

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