Have a rant – CIPD barriers to human resources

I am a Fellow Chartered Management Accountant who has worked financially, operationally and in an HR capacity for a retailer for several years. I decided I would study for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) qualification – specifically, the Professional Assessment of Competence (PAC) – to strengthen my knowledge of human resources and HR processes.

Several articles I have read say that one way to be taken seriously as a senior manager in HR is to first become a commercial business person. This is right up my street, but there is only one problem… the CIPD.

I have tried for six months to get advice on exemptions and the best route to complete the CIPD qualification. But when I called, I was told the PAC was very difficult, and that I would have to prove I had several years of HR experience. Also, when I mentioned my qualification, the person on the line said she had never heard of it, followed by: “Oh – you’re an accountant. I am not sure whether they get any exemptions.”

I have telephoned five times and also sent e-mails via the website requesting assistance, but to no avail. I am told other Chartered Institute of Management Accountants members have had similar issues with the CIPD.

So, as a senior manager of a large retailer, it is difficult for me to take HR seriously. If the CIPD doesn’t encourage potential new customers with good business experience and recognised professional qualifications to join it in the quest to improve people management, it has little chance of putting HR on the business map.

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