What Are the Top HR Certifications in Most Demand?

If you’re an HR professional looking to stay abreast of all this, here are some certifications to consider

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According to the World Economic Forum, the main forces influencing the world of Human Resourced (HR) in 2020 include distributed workforces, changing demographics, new societal expectations, task disruption, skills of the future, and new business models.

If you’re an HR professional looking to stay abreast of all this, here are some certifications to consider this year.

Traditional HR certifications

When it comes to the core HR function, becoming a certified HR professional is a great way to set yourself apart from other professionals and develop the appropriate skills and knowledge.

The Society for Human Resource Management is one association that is well recognized across the U.S. They offer an opportunity to become a recognized leader in the field of HR and a chance to be more competitive in the industry. If you’re building your career in HR and looking to distinguish yourself from other candidates, the SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) is a great place to start as employers often seek this out when hiring. If you’re an HR leader looking to elevate your leadership and HR capabilities, you can consider the SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) designation.

There are many other HR designations that would be equally suitable. It’s important to understand your own needs and desired outcome when looking at designations and the associated costs. For example, if you’re looking to advance within a role that you’re already in, you might look for a program that has a curriculum tailored to your particular role and responsibilities.

Having the official designation is like having a “name brand” associated with your career. There are some cases where this will be helpful, and others where your experience will speak for itself without the certification.

Learning and development (L&D) certification

The need to develop the skills of employees and retrain them on skills for the future will be a huge task for HR professionals in 2020. In order to keep up with demand, learning professionals will be influential in supporting people through their changing roles.

L&D teams more than ever play a strategic role when it comes to employee retention, engagement, and overall talent management strategies. Because of this, L&D professionals are becoming increasingly valuable in all organizations.

If you’re looking for a recognized certification in this space, the Association for Talent Development (ATD) offers the Certified Professional in Learning & Performance certification. ATD is a “go-to” association for learning and talent development professionals across the U.S. and offers different streams and specializations in the field of Learning and Performance.

Many universities also offer specializations in the field of learning, which can be found under the umbrella of Instructional Design, Adult Education, Educational Technology, Organizational Behavior, etc.

Change management certification

As companies compete to stay afloat, the ability to stay agile and change quickly to meet the needs of customers and markets will be crucial in remaining competitive. Creating a culture of change is necessary to be innovative and stay ahead of the curve. This is where change management is becoming an important part of HR.

PROSCI is an industry leader when it comes to change management. They are internationally recognized and have created a library of benchmark research around their ADKAR methodology, which is a model for change management used by practitioners. This program helps people understand their role as the individual within the larger picture of change and provides a clear framework for people to follow.

Similar to all the above-mentioned certification, this is a “name brand” certification, which is often requested by employers, but other brands would be just as good (and possibly better!) based on where you are in your career and the immediate need for the certification. Do your due diligence to understand the curriculum and how you would be applying it before diving in.

The less traditional HR path

HR as we know it is changing quickly. More than ever, HR now needs to focus on fostering an environment of diversity and empowering divergent ways of thinking. Companies that are looking at old problems in new ways are the ones who are coming out on top.

Certifications that focus on diversity and inclusion, design thinking, and growth mindset are all important as we shift gears into a new way of thinking and being at work.

With the growing body of remote work and digital economy, HR professionals must refine their communication skills in order to foster strong communications across digital communities. Certifications or courses around digital communication will become a strong asset for professionals who are building remote teams and culture.

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