CIPD / BNP row resurfaces

Good to see stories broken by Personnel Today being covered in our competitors, however reluctantly.

The latest issue of People Management (published on New Year’s Day, no less) runs a letter from an HR professional having a pop at the magazine for not refering to the fact that a CIPD member appeared on the BNP membership list when it covered the story.

We broke the original story back in mid-November, which led to senior HR practitioners calling on the institute to toughen its stance as it refused to condemn the member or take any action against him.

People Management, you will recall, is produced on behalf of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development and is sent to all CIPD members. So perhaps it’s no great surprise that the publication neglected to mention that one of its paymaster’s disciples was named as a member of the far-right party.

But by failing to do so, the magazine missed the whole point of the debate – HR practitioners were arguing the rights and wrongs of the CIPD’s stance on various online networking forums – that was where the real story lay.

Such was the criticism in the most recent letter, that the CIPD actually felt compelled to respond with a statement, which is a lot more than it gave Personnel Today when we requested comment before and after the original story was published some six weeks before.

I’m not suggesting the CIPD is operating some kind of Pravda-style operation in its control of People Management, as I’m sure (kind of) that its journalists are free to write what they see fit. But the HR community should remember that content appearing in the CIPD’s membership magazine will, invariably, lack true independence.

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