Tag Archives: PHR

SHRM certification

Congratulations on achieving your SHRM-CP.

Today I took advantage of the SHRM-CP tutorial to get the certification for free. I have to say that I actually like and see the validity of the competency based nature of this certification and how it will lend credence to Human Resources as a whole and a business partner.

I have largely staid out of the fray between the HRCI vs SHRM certification war. I’ve chosen to wait it out to see the offerings for comparison and see what the results are to organizations, professionals, and the profession as a whole over time. Without data it is hard to give an educated guess, and everyone has an opinion. 😉 I like my opinions to have weight.

It is early yet, since the certification was just offered for the first time three months ago, but it will be interesting to see when and which roles will require or prefer this certification. It will be interesting to see if it will be placed in relation to the HRCI certifications.

The part I enjoyed the most was the competency check lists. I answered as truthfully as possible, so that it could be a useful tool to me. I was pleasantly surprised that both my professional (paid) and volunteer experience places me predominantly in the Exec category.

Beaushene SHRM-CP competency chart

Beaushene SHRM-CP chart







The process took less than an hour, and was free. Can’t beat that! I really liked the situations and questions offered. Again, in the vein of being honest, I chose the best choice 7 of 9 times, the second best choice once, and one of the “what the heck, totally the wrong choice” once.

For one that does not currently have an HRCI or IPMA-HR to take the test is $300, which is $100 cheaper than the HRCI PHR. Being so new, it may not be eligible for tuition or expense reimbursement from organizations yet. To be fair, it has been five years since I took the PHR, so I cannot legitimately compare the SHRM-CP scenario quesitons to those of the PHR.

If an organization does reimburse you, why not go for both? Until the dust clears – which may be five to ten years from now, it is best to hedge ones bets. 😉 But if one is paying out of pocket, I would go for the HRCI certification simply due to its history and being well known.

Good luck which ever you decide. May the odds be in your favor!

Regulatory Environments in Compensation Management


Photo Credit HR Benefits Alert

On December 7th I sat for the World at Work C1: Regulatory Environments in Compensation Management test. There was a lot going on – I tried the eLearning option, it was a new testing venue for me, and the information itself.

For the T1: Total Rewards Management course I bought the cheapest package only to stretch my annual education reimbursement allowance. I was a nervous wreck not knowing how World at Work testing went, how their materials would prepare one, etc. In the end, I kicked the tests butt passing with a 93%. Despite how it appears with having passed the PHR, FPC, CPP, and now the T1 and C1 I am not a good test taker. I took the SAT three times and never cracked 1100 (out of 1600.) I took the GRE and got another perfectly mediocre score. So the fact I’m doing well on these tests is something I am proud of, though other than putting in the time to repeat the information enough times I’m not sure how I’m doing it.

Since the year was ending, I decided to splurge and test out one of the more expensive learning options World at Work offered – E-Learning. At first I thought it was really cool – I could listen to recordings while multitasking so that I could absorb the information almost like through osmosis in addition to reading, taking summarizing notes, and making/going through flashcards. There was the added benefit that the presenter did include some mnemonics and stories to flesh out the information on the slides (that were identical to the book.)

I passed the C1 course with a 93%.

I had to laugh that it was the exact same pass rate as the T1 course. In the end, I don’t think the recordings helped me any (though they may help others!)

As I did with the T1 course, here are some things about the C1 to prepare one for the test.

  • It is 114 minutes to take the test, not including the system tutorial. (I time it this time, I took 2 minutes to do the tutorial, but the full 6 minutes were taken from my overall countdown.)
  • The test is 110 questions.
  • The end of chapter test questions are on the test itself.
  • Everything is contained within the book.
  • There are some second and third tier reasoning questions; this test was more like the PHR where you had to know your stuff to pick the best question. (Unlike the T1 which was primary level reasoning that is basic regurgitation.) However, that level of reasoning is only about 20% of the test, the rest is primary.
  • Case law was helpful in studying, but did not show up on the test. There were no questions asking about Griggs V. Powers Duke or any other case.
  • There were no “gotcha” questions on minutia like I found on the T1 test (which was only 2-3 questions anyways.)

I was disappointed somewhat that the first testing venue was no longer an option since it was so close to home (5 minute drive!), though it did have it’s own issues (sound proofing.) This venue was odd as well, in it’s own right, though much more professional.

I purposely chose the C1 course during Year End and Annual Enrollment time because it appeared to be mostly information that reinforced basics from the PHR and that come up at work often with clients. Basically, I knew the course would be easier for me than others so I took it during a stressful time frame to balance the over all load on my brain and nerves. I still never managed to get holiday cards out, despite this balance. :

Two down, and seven more courses to go before I get the CCP and a 3% raise. 🙂  

Know your quirks

Credit: BYU Active Learning Techniques

I am currently studying for the first test in the series of tests to obtain the Certified Compensation Professional (CCP) certification. I decided to start at the beginning – T1 aka Total Rewards.

Compensation is a passion of mine. Money was always a debate growing up – who had it or didn’t, what to do with it, did we have enough, should we get more for what we paid, learning how to manage it… Two things I learned early on about myself are that I don’t think I will ever have enough income to feel secure and do what I want to do as well as I am a life long learner. These two go nicely hand in hand with continuing my education through these certifications which in turn increase my income and prepare me for advanced roles where there is even more to learn and earn.

There is the added bonus that many certifications count as experience towards recertifying other certifications already obtained. 😉

My husband is currently taking some courses to complete his associates. He’s been driving me crazy because his needs for studying and methods of studying are so different than my own. I can – and actually need – the tv on to act as something to tune out and further focus on my studies, whereas for him it is too distracting. I need repetition through reading and writing to ingrain the concepts, methods, etc into my memory. He seems to pick it up on the first read through and doesn’t even take notes.

We both have been successful. The last time I went to a university I had a GPA of 3.86/4.0.; I have passed the FPC, CPP, and PHR with more than enough wiggle room. He last test he scored 93/100.

So my take away for you is: know your quirks. Know what drives you. Know what sort of environment and method you need to succeed at your task.

These are translatable skills that can easily be applied outside the classroom and testing center. Until you know yourself, you will float and flounder. Take the time to learn and to succeed. You can achieve anything when you put your mind to it. 😉