The University College of the Cayman Islands has for the first time offered a preparation course and certification exam for a Global Professional in Human Resources certification. Because the GPHR certificate focuses on managing and leveraging cultural differences in a diverse workforce, this certificate is particularly useful in Cayman’s multicultural work environment.
HR professionals have a choice of qualification and professional certifications from Masters degrees to professional designations offered by the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development, the Human Capital Institute and the HR Certification Institute, the certification arm of the Society of Human Resource Management. The HRCI provides three levels of designations including the PHR (Professional in Human Resources), the SPHR (Strategic Professional in HR) and the GPHR (Global Professional in Human Resources).
The GPHR certificate attests to a HR professional’s mastery of five subject areas: strategic human resource management; global talent acquisition and mobility; global compensation and benefits; organisational effectiveness and global talent development; and risk management and workforce relations.
“Gaining HRCI certification of any type is no easy feat,” said Bonnie Nelsen, Director of Graduate Studies and Professional Development at UCCI. “But earning the GPHR certification is especially challenging. According to HRCI, only 1.15 per cent of all certified SHRM members held a GPHR certificate as of August 2012. So I’m very proud of the six participants in UCCI’s GPHR preparation course who successfully passed their exam and earned GPHR certification.”
Hard work, self-discipline and a supportive learning environment created the recipe for success, according to Michelle Gibbon of Stepping Stones Recruitment, Training and Development. “Despite the fact that I’ve only been out of University for a few years and have excellent study skills, I was quite nervous about writing the GPHR exam given its prestigious status.
The preparation course at UCCI not only helped to engrain knowledge but also give me the skills and techniques I needed to do my best on the exam.”
Ms. Nelsen said, “We offer the warmest congratulations to Michelle and her colleagues, who demonstrated a passion for HR management, a commitment to master the skills and knowledge needed to success in today’s global workplace and the sheer determination to succeed, all of which are required to earn the GPHR certification. Indeed, the participant’s pass rate on the GPHR exam is 55.5 per cent, above average for recent sittings of the exam, according to HRCI.”
Ms. Gibbon also stressed that the GPHR certification was particularly valuable in the Cayman Islands:
“Considering how much of our work here is done on a global basis, this qualification is extremely beneficial to how we recruit, train and develop all employees, from Cayman and all over the world, to build successful and sustainable organisations for our Islands.”
Ms. Nelsen agrees. “Because the Cayman Islands are so diverse and do business with stakeholders in all parts of the world, the knowledge covered in the GPHR examination is directly applicable to every organization on the islands. In fact, many participants in the preparation course were applying their global skills and knowledge on the job even before the certification exam took place. This certification adds real value to HR professionals and the firms that employ them almost immediately.”
SHRM training and certification is offered at UCCI every year; the HR certification preparatory course is held from September to November, in time for HRCI’s December examination window. Preparatory courses for HRCI certification can also be held in the spring if interest and demand warrants doing so, the university said. UCCI also offers regionally accredited graduate degrees in human resource management and business administration.