To Certify or Not? The Value and Power of Earning Your HR Credentials

Who would you trust more to rewire the electricity in your home? A licensed, bonded electrician or someone with years of experience and glowing reviews, but no credentials? This is a hot topic in the HR industry because earning your certifications isn’t required for all HR positions, but doing so can have a broad impact on the direction and trajectory of a career in Human Resources. If you’re pursuing your certifications and attending the 2018 California HR Conference, you’ll be surrounded by opportunities to prepare for your certification and earn credits toward your recertification.

For those unsure about whether or not earning an HR certification is worth it, we asked HR expert and PIHRA Leader Richard Dawson about his thoughts on the value of getting certified.

Why Richard Dawson? He’s an MBA (2018), SHRM-SCP, SPHR, PHRca, HRPM, and has 29 years of experience as a full-fledged HR Generalist/Manager with industry acumen.  He is skilled in facilitation, research, analyzing and translating complex business requirements into sophisticated HR strategies. Richard has held board of directors positions with Inland Empire SHRM to include Director of Certification, VP of Finance, President-Elect, and President, CalSHRM as Director of Certification and Communication, Vice-President of Leadership for PIHRA and National SHRM roles as Diversity & Inclusion Expertise Panel, Ethics, Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainability Expertise Panel.

He also teaches HR Certification at five local universities in Southern California. He has been facilitating HR Certification classes since 2010. New for Richard In 2018, he has been named the new Director of HR Certification for (PIHRA) Professional in Human Resources Association, tasked with directing and teaching HR Certification. As well as the new Service Provider HR Certification Instructor for Inland Empire SHRM.  He also provides HR consulting and private tutoring on HR Certification and career / organizational development.

Check out what Richard says below about the power of HR certification, then take a look at the pre-conference certification prep-classes and all the recertification credits you can earn at CAHR18.

In your opinion, why should HR professionals become certified?

Richard Dawson: To gain valuable business acumen, HR employment, regulations, and best practices experience, as well as become a better tactical and strategic partner to stakeholders in operations.  Certification aids in enhancing professional development and incorporates creditability with employment practices.  Finally, the recertification process ensures staying updated with the ever changing laws, compliance, and human resource regulations.

Why did you earn your certification?

RD: I earned my certifications to enhance my business and human resources knowledge, as well as to be respected in the HR community by being a credible HR strategist, and to support my desire to educate others on business matters that produce successful and impactful positive outcomes for my students and organizations.

What do you enjoy most about teaching?

RD: I love teaching because I enjoy educating others, and hearing how my teaching and career experiences helped others with their professional and organizational development.

If it has been awhile since someone has studied to take an exam, what advice would you give them?

RD: Do thorough research on the process.  Invest in the correct study materials.  Ask questions with the correct individual(s).  Do the work, put in quality time to read, comprehend, and utilize credible practice exam questions to test your knowledge and skills with answering multiple choice questions.

What is one thing you wish someone had told you about certification that you learned on your own?

RD: Read the material for comprehension, and do lots of practice questions.

How did you receive information on the different types of certifications offered?

RD: By joining a SHRM chapter, and taking on volunteer roles within the SHRM organization, and doing research with both HRCI and SHRM, and asking lots of questions with viable sources.

Did obtaining a certification increase your salary?

RD: Throughout my career, yes, and based on my HR Certifications, I was afforded career opportunities that completed some of my bucket list items.

To learn more about the difference between HRCI & SHRM certification, watch our webinars below hosted in collaboration with HRCI & SHRM staff!

If you haven’t registered to attend the 2018 California HR Conference yet and take advantage of the session credits and prep-courses available. Time is running out!