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The Human Resource Certification Institute (HRCI), which maintains the nationally recognized standards set by individuals working in the profession, offers three levels of professional certification:

* Professional in Human Resources (PHR)
* Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR)
* Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR)

These certificates signify a specific mastery of the human resource body of knowledge. As the human resource management is such a dynamic field, ever changing, re-certification is required to demonstrate currency.

To find more detailed information about all three exams including application deadline and exam dates for the current year, visit the HRCI's site.

For certification activities ongoing in our state within the local chapters, contact our Certification Director, Jamie Yeaman Brown, SPHR via phone: 334-832-8238 or email: .

Recertification News
Jamie Yeaman Brown, SPHR
SHRM Alabama State Council 2005 Certification Director

So you've crammed, studied and taken the PHR or SPHR exam. Now that your brain is tired, the last thing you're probably thinking about is recertification. Recertification is a critical step that should be taken in order to maintain your certification. Shelly Prochaska, SPHR, Manager, Southeast Region recently shared with the SHRM Alabama State Council that HR professionals do not re-certify for the following reasons:

-They forgot,
-They didn't get a reminder, or
-They just didn't know that they had to re-certify.

I don't know about you, but it took so much hard work and dedication for me to EARN the certification that it's hard to believe that one could actually FORGET about it. If you are using the designation on business cards, letterhead and the like, this should be a daily reminder for you.

HRCI will send two courtesy e-mail reminders between three and six months prior to the expiration of the certification period (check with HRCI to make sure they have the most up-to-date information on you.) I recommend that you keep up with your activities as you go. If you are interested in receiving a tool  that has been developed to track your accomplishments, just let me know.

Certifications are in effect for three years and the "Period of Certification" can be found on your certificate. Certified professionals should familiarize themselves with the Recertification Handbook published by HRCI at www.hrci.org because it is really easier than you think!

As a reminder, credit is awarded for HR-related activities in these areas:

-Continuing Education: credit is awarded hour for hour
-Instruction: one hour taught = 1.5 credit hours
-On-the-Job Experience: credit is awarded for "first-time" work activity if it broadens your knowledge of the field of HR.
-Research/ Publishing: conduct research, write or publish for the industry.
-Leadership: external leadership activities count; letters and visits regarding legislation count.
-Professional Membership: become a member of a national HR-related professional association and earn your credit hours.

If you are unable to achieve the 60 hours of recertification credit by the end of your certification period, the only other option is to re-take the exam. Dorothy Hill, SPHR, Director, Southeast Region shared that some professionals prefer to re-take the exam because it is more challenging for them. If you're up for that challenge, go for it! Otherwise, take the time to capture the credits before the end of your certification period.

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