Episode 0: Deciding Between aPHR, PHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP Exams

Welcome to the HR Certification Podcast, a podcast for HR leaders working towards their human resources certification with HRCI and SHRM. Join host Jessica Miller-Merrell, founder of Workology.com and HR Certification prep program, Ace The HR Exam, as she shares study tips, exam insights, and topical review for HR exams, including the APHR, PRHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP, and SHRM-SCP. Now here’s Jessica with this episode of the HR Certification Podcast.

Episode 0: Deciding Between aPHR, PHR, SPHR, SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP Exams

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:00:40.07] Hi, and welcome to the HR Certification Podcast. I’m your host, Jessica Miller-Merrell, and I’m so excited to have you here. My mission, purpose, and passion is elevating the human resources industry. And in the HR Certification Podcast, I help HR leaders in personal and professional development solely focused on their HR certification exams with SHRM and HRCI. This podcast is powered by Workology’s HR certification prep courses and resources. If you’re interested in learning more, go to our podcast link, its HRCertificationPodcast.com. Now before I dive into the podcast today, I want to hear from you. Text “HR CERTIFICATION” to 512-548-3005. That’s HR Certification. Text the word “HR CERTIFICATION” to 512-548-83005. You can ask questions, leave comments, and make suggestions for HR certification prep topics for future podcast episodes. This is my community text number and I want to hear from you.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:01:43.94] In each and every episode, I will cover information and resources to help you with your HR certification exams. These podcasts are short and to the point. I want you to get in as much review as possible and then move on. The HR Certification Podcast is going to be divided into different segments. In each episode, we’re going to address a common question or review an HR topic area, like a term for you, and then we’re going to move on to an HR glossary term, which I’ll also review, and then we’ll walk you through an HR certification exam question. Again, these are designed for SHRM and HRCI exams and that includes the APHR, the PHR, the SPHR, the SHRM-CP, and the SHRM-SCP exams. In the transcript notes of each podcast, I will also share recommended resources and information to assist you in your review, and these are available at HRCertificationPodcast.com. So let’s get started with our first pilot episode. This episode of the HR Certification Podcast is about how to choose your HR certification exam. How do you decide between the APHR, the PHR, the SPHR, the SHRM-CP, or the SHRM-SCP exams? It’s not as easy as you think, and this is such an important decision. This question I get all the time from new students, and that’s the exact reason why I wanted to talk about this in our pilot episode right out of the gate. There are a number of reasons to earn your HR Certification credentials, but what’s important is becoming familiar with what you qualify for based on your education, work, experience, and background. Because we have two different certifying bodies for certification, SHRM and HRCI, I know that it can be confusing, which is why I put together a handy dandy HR Certification Quiz for you to help you understand what you qualify for. SHRM and HRCI are both great places to get your HR Certification, but they are different and they have different requirements, and I know that can be a lot.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:03:44.96] Let me give you example. For the APHR and the SHRM-CP, these don’t have any education or experience requirements to qualify for the exam. However, the PHR, the SPHR, and the SHRM-SCP, all have different educational and experience combinations and in some cases you can qualify to take the PHR with HRCI and the SHRM-SCP with SHRM, but you won’t qualify to take the SPHR with HRCI. Are you with me? That’s a lot of acronyms. I also get tons of questions from students, especially on Tik Tok, where I spend a lot of time and they’re asking about what are the exams like? If you want to follow me on Tik Tok, it’s @WorkologyBlog over there. I want HR leaders to know the type of material that’s covered and when they can take the exam as well as how much is this going to all cost me? Don’t worry. I got you. I have a great resource called the HR Certification quiz and that helps you answer all questions and more. It’s just a seven-question quiz and it gives you instant access to information about which exams you qualify for, for HRCI and SHRM. You can go to HRCertificationQuiz.com and take our no-cost HR Certification Quiz. I want you to understand what you qualify for and have it all in one place with SHRM and HRCI. You’ll answer seven questions about work, experience, education, your HR exam timeline, and a handful of other questions on how you like to learn.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:05:22.61] This quiz takes 2 minutes, and once you answer these questions, you’ll be directed to an instant resource on what you qualify for. And it will have a comprehensive, just rundown of things like exam fees, all the exams that you qualify for, and just information like what’s on the exam, the type of test questions you’re going to be asked and where you have to go in order to register and take the exam. I don’t make money off this quiz. I am doing it because I want to elevate the HR industry. I put it together after thousands of HR leaders begged me for these answers. They kept asking the same questions over and over again. So I was like, I’m going to make a quiz. I put it together because I want everyone to have equal access from a neutral third party. That’s me. And I want to give you all the facts about HR Certification exams right at your fingertips so you can make the best decision for you. This quiz is really designed to be a one-stop shop for all your information on how to get started with HR certification exams. Again, that link is HRCertificationQuiz.com.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:06:27.41] So let’s assume that you’ve taken the quiz and you know what, HR Certification exams with SHRM or HRCI you qualify for. If you don’t know, go over to HRCertificationQuiz.com and do that. Now before deciding, there’s one last thing I want you to think about, and that is researching job postings in your local area. So different geographic areas have different sort of likeliness or interests in certain HR certifications. So it’s important for you to research those job postings in the area where you’re going to live right now, but also where are you going to live in two years, five years, and seven years down the road. Now, I’m not saying it’s 100% accurate, but I want you to think big and I want you to help dream and kind of formulate what that’s going to look like for you so that you can really make the best decision. Doing this is going to help you identify the types of HR Certifications that are being included as requirements in job postings for the jobs you qualify for now, not to mention in the future, the two years, and the five years, seven years down the road. I have found that different geographic areas and positions like to see different HR Certification credentials than others. And also SHRM certification is relatively new in the history of HR certification. So it’s important for you to have all the facts to make a good decision.

Break: [00:07:55.55] Let’s take a reset while we move into our next segment here at the HR Certification Podcast powered by Workology, I’m your host, Jessica Miller-Merrell. Workology offers HR certification prep courses and resources. If you want to learn more about what we offer, visit HRCertificationPodcast.com or go to Workology.com. We offer a variety of different prep resources, including physical products like flashcards and study guides, along with courses for all different types of learners. Most importantly, these are accessible for you wherever and whenever you are. Our digital courses are on-demand and they are accessible on our very own Workology app available for Android and Apple. I also want to hear from you. Text “HR CERTIFICATION” to 512-548-3005. Ask me questions, leave comments, make suggestions for future topics on the HR Certification Podcast. This is my community text number and I want to make sure I’m serving up the best resources so that you can ace your HR Certification exam.

HR Glossary Term

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:09:04.87] We are now moving into a special segment of the HR Certification Podcast where we review an HR glossary term and we do this for each episode. These are all human resources, terms and definitions that cover the knowledge base for both SHRM and HRCI exams. When it comes to becoming familiar with HR terms that are part of the SHRM and HRCI knowledge base, it is important for you to review them repeatedly and using different learning styles. This is one of the things that’s been an important part of my Ace The HR Exam course. We offer different ways to learn with audio lessons, short videos, encouraging note-taking, flashcards, digital and physical, and longer form lecture content. I encourage you to focus on a single topic area or subject matter in your review versus trying to review all the things. It just doesn’t make sense to do it that way. I want you to become a master in a specific subject matter so that you can move on to the next. And I want you to organize how you review those subjects or those areas by what’s going to be on the exam, because each exam is different and what’s more likely to be on the exam that you don’t know. So if there is a subject area that you’re struggling with and it’s got 40% of exam questions, you need to be reviewing that first. It’s going to increase the likelihood that you pass your exam. This is the most important part of structuring your review.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:10:37.27] So let’s move on to the review of our HR glossary term for this episode. I’m going to start by mentioning the term and then I’m going to repeat it three times for you. Today’s term is Vicarious liability. In a workplace context, an employer can be liable for the acts or omissions of its employees, provided it can be shown that they took place in the course of their employment. Vicarious liability. In a workplace context, an employer can be liable for the acts or omissions of its employees, provided it can be shown that they took place in the course of their employment. Vicarious liability. In a workplace context, an employer can be liable for the acts or omissions of its employees, provided it can be shown that they took place in the course of their employment. Vicarious liability.

HR Test Question Review

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:11:30.58] Moving on to segment number three. This is the HR Test Question Review. This is a special segment where we review an HR test question and we do this for each and every episode. These are all test questions that cover the knowledge base for both the SHRM and HRCI exams. If you’re looking for resources that are certifying body specific when it comes to test questions, go to HRPracticeTest.com, select your certifying body, and access our test question bank. We have one just for SHRM and one for HRCI, too. So before I share the question, I want to give you a quick review of my HR test question framework. More information is available on our Workology YouTube channel. I’m going to link to that video in the transcript of this podcast episode over on HRCertificationPodcast.com. So there are five steps to the HR test question framework. Step one is to read each question slowly and concisely. Step two is to identify the HR competency that the test question is about. Step three is to eliminate the wrong answers. Step four is what I call WWSD or WWHD. That stands for What Would SHRM Do or What Would HRCI Do. WWSD or WWHD. Think about the test question from the point of view of the person from HRCI or SHRM writing that question as you are answering it. And five, go with your gut. Answer every single question.

Jessica Miller-Merrell: [00:13:05.50] So let’s get to that test question. The question is, after completing a benchmarking analysis, what is the next logical step? Is it A) Contact the survey participants for clarification. B) Develop a gap analysis based on the benchmarking data. C) Create a due diligence review of the process. Or D) Implement needed change. Going to read that one more time for you.

After completing a benchmarking analysis, what is the next logical step?

A) Contact the survey participants for clarification.

B) Develop a gap analysis based on benchmarking data.

C) Create a due diligence review of the process.

D) Implement the needed change.

What do you think the best answer is? Drum roll, please. The answer is B) Develop a gap analysis based on the benchmarking data. A bonus tip for you, as you’re reviewing exam questions and are not familiar with the topic. Maybe you just couldn’t remember what due diligence was or gap analysis in this question we reviewed. Add these terms to review in your next study session. I like to do this this way, that way your review is going to be organized and you’ve identified a knowledge gap as you’re preparing for the exam. So you want to review that and do it in a different order because your brain is a muscle and you need to challenge that in a new and interesting way. The goal here is to ace your HR certification exam, which is why we have to mix things up and challenge that brain.

Closing: [00:14:46.14] HR certification is such an important step in your career, whether you’re looking to increase your HR knowledge base, gain credibility, maybe at the office, increase your income potential, or prove to yourself that you deserve it. You have worked hard and you know what you’re talking about. You do all of these things. Whatever your reason is for getting HR certification, I am here to support you. Together, let’s elevate the profession. Thank you for joining me in our pilot episode of the HR Certification Podcast. My name is Jessica Miller-Merrell and I help HR leaders ace their HR certification exams. Let me do the same for you. Workology offers a host of resources and courses to help you with your HR certification. You can visit HRCertificationPodcast.com to learn more about how we help with HR certification prep for the APHR, the PHR, the SPHR, the SHRM-CP, and the SHRM-SCP exams. If you have a suggestion for a podcast topic for review for an upcoming episode of the HR Certification Podcast, I want to hear it. Text “HR CERTIFICATION” to 512-548-3005. This is my community text number. Thank you so much for joining our inaugural HR Certification Podcast episode. Let’s get out there and do it together. I wish you the best in your HR certification study prep. Talk to you soon.

RECOMMENDED RESOURCES

 

– HR Certification Quiz 

– Workology on Youtube | HR Test Question Framework

– HR Practice Test Question Bank

– HR Certification: SHRM and HRCI 

– HR Benchmark Survey

– Workology Podcast | Ep 161 – The Value of HR Certification: #HRCI or #SHRM?

– Workology Podcast | Ep 210 – How to Ace Your HR Certification Exam

– Workology Podcast | Episode 262: Test-Taking Strategies for HRCI and SHRM Certification

– Workology Podcast | Episode 332: Passing your HR Certification exam – What was your experience like?

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