Want to bid for HR-focused jobs

With 15 years’ military instructor (pilot) experience, and 10 years’
commercial training and development, I find myself redundant at 47. I have a
BSc, BEd in adult education and development, and will shortly achieve both
level A and intermediate level B psychometric testing qualifications.
Throughout my career I have dabbled extensively in HR (the HR manager in my
current position reports to me) and have a very good – but not expert –
knowledge of this function. I see many jobs advertised as ‘HR and training
manager’. What HR-type certificates/ qualifications can I rapidly obtain that
would allow me to bid for some of these more HR-focused roles?

Caroline Battson, consultant, Macmillan Davies Hodes

With the commercial experience that you have already gained in your career I
would highly recommend that you look to develop your skills further within the
HR and training field. First level courses you could consider would be the CTP
(Certificate Of Training Practice) or CPP (Certificate Of Personnel Practice).
These take around 10 months part-time, depending on the institution attended.

As you already have a BSc in Adult Educational and Development you may find
these courses a little basic, and might want to consider going straight onto
the advanced level post-graduate course or PDS – Professional Development Scheme.
This is a two or three-year course (again dependant on the hours and
educational institution) and will give you graduate membership with the CIPD.

Universities will often incorporate the PDS within their MA in HRM courses,
which would also be worth considering. If you would like further information
you can get free advice from the CIPD on 020 8971 9000.

Victoria Wall, managing director, Victoria Wall Associates

In this current market it is essential that we offer realistic advice.
Employers can now afford to select candidates with both relevant experience and
the professional qualifications to fill their HR roles. It is therefore
advisable, if you have not already done so, for you to join the CIPD as a
member, and immediately enrol on the CIPD course.

This on your CV, coupled with your A and B training in psychometric testing,
should convince potential employers of your suitability and commitment to an HR
career. Use your degree in adult education and focus on training and
development. Running assessment and development centres would be a good start,
along with overseeing graduate training programmes.

Peter Sell, joint managing director, DMS Consultancy

You will have noticed that most ‘HR and training manager’ vacancies ask for
CIPD qualifications. They often specify corporate membership, which is member
of the CIPD (MCIPD) or fellow (FCIPD). The CIPD qualification through the
college or flexible learning route will normally take more than two years. You
could look at NVQs in personnel or the professional assessment route. The
professional assessment route is open to those with more than five years’
management level experience, of which at least three must have been in HR.

Although an HR qualification will help in your job search, prospective employers
will be more interested in your experience. On your CV, you will need to put
across your HR experience in a more appropriate way. The fact you had an HR
manager reporting to you should be evidence of knowledge.

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