Shock behind the feel good factor

Letters of the week

• Like most people, I enjoy looking at and having a quiet chuckle over some
of the ads on TV and in the press, so I turned to the piece on the RADs in the
1 February issue of Personnel Today with anticipation. I thought that the
winner was amusing, clever and had that feelgood factor warmth to it.

As I read, it made me think for a split second about making a career change…
BUT I turned cold when there, in the middle of the text, was, "You should
also be aged 19-28."

I know nothing about H&S in the air industry so this could be a
statutory requirement, but if it isn’t, why on earth is Personnel Today
supporting an award which gives recognition to a practice that goes against
what I thought was IPD policy on accepting ads with upper and lower age limits?
I could rehearse all of the arguments for abandoning these limits, but the IPD
has done a good job of this in the past.

All I will say is that having been lucky enough to have flown long haul on
business trips, the age of the cabin crew was not the criteria by which I
judged service.

Jo Metcalf

Voluntary sector training adviser

Success via a different route

• I have some sympathy with Glen Cook’s experience (letters, 1 February) of
returning to IPD study part-time after five years in the HR function.

It may be that Glen would have been better suited to another route to IPD
membership – one that would capitalise upon his work experience and

Of the four routes to IPD membership, professional assessment allows the
experienced HRM or HRD practitioner to work with an adviser – their personal
trainer – from an IPD-approved professional assessment centre to produce a
portfolio of evidence of their competent performance meeting the IPD
professional standards.

Glen would have been able to choose from a wider range of electives than
those available through his local course provider and could have tailored this
activity to fit his work commitments. He would probably have completed the
electives in a few months and, with no tie-in to twice-yearly examination
dates, could have been assessed at any time.

All of this information is available from IPD (Membership Development) at
Wimbledon or on the Web at

Finally, all routes to IPD membership are "mix and match" so that
his earlier achievements by the education route would have been taken into
account allowing him to complete quickly. I hope that he will now reconsider
achieving IPD corporate membership for which he appears to be well qualified.

Ron Crisp

IPD chief verifier

Professional Assessment

Letter of the week

Bias blocks black women’s careers

• There has been much debate recently over women breaking through the
so-called "glass ceiling". Well, think again about women of black

Qualified to the hilt, hardworking, (even easy on the eye) black women, are
finding it extremely difficult to land good professional jobs, and within HR it
becomes even more difficult.

A BA Hons degree holder with IPD professional qualifications is being
measured in terms of, "Can you fit in?" I think that this in itself
is demoralising and something has to be done.

I think that it is a crying shame that black women in HR are undervalued.
They have to work twice as hard to get where they are, yet they cannot be
considered until full qualifications are achieved, even if they are potentially
the prime candidate.

My message to the HR recruiter is, "Live your post and practise what
you preach", after all, the recruitment procedure should be unbiased and
competencies have to be met by all candidates.

Do not presume that if a black person – be they male or female – is at the
helm in HR, it automatically leads to an influx of black employees. Most black
people in HR are ethically bound to fairness.

DL Poyser Grad IPD


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