To be certified by HRPA, and earn the right to use the Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP) designation, applicants must have accumulated at least three years of experience in HR at a professional level, in addition to meeting all other certification requirements.
Section 2(a) of the Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario Act, 1990 gives HRPA the statutory authority to “establish uniform province-wide standards of knowledge, experience and ethics for all persons engaged in the field of human resources management.” Section 4(1) (b) of the Act gives HRPA the statutory authority to “prescribe the experience criteria to be met by candidates for registration.”
The three-year experience requirement has been in use at HRPA since the very beginning of the CHRP designation. The length of the experience requirement was set at three years; this length of time has been deemed sufficient to ensure that an individual is capable of operating at a professional level in HR. The vast majority of regulated professions in Ontario incorporate some form of experience requirement.
The Experience Requirement
To earn the CHRP designation, individuals must have had at least three years of demonstrated experience in HR at a professional level. This experience must:
- Be in the scope of practice for human resources, which includes any of the following areas:
- The development and implementation of human resources policies and procedures;
- Consultation in the area of human resources management;
- Providing advice to clients, managers, and employees in matters pertaining to management of human resources;
- The representation of clients and organizations in proceedings related to human resources management;
- Program development and evaluation in the area of human resources management;
- The supervision of other Human Resources professionals whether registered or non-registered;
- Coaching of employees, managers, and other individuals in matters relating to work and employment;
- The conduct of research in the area of human resources management;
- Teaching in the area of human resources management.
- Be at the professional level, in which all four dimensions below must apply:
- Independence of actions — relates to the amount of planning, self-direction, decision-making and autonomy involved in the work experience;
- A depth of work requirements — relates to the extent to which work experience requires data analysis and interpretation of the relevant data;
- Level of interaction — relates to the degree to which the individual interacts with a broad spectrum of contacts, including decision-makers; and
- Responsibility for work outcome — relates to accuracy and extent to which the individual is held accountable for his/her work and decisions.
- Add up to a minimum duration of three years (please note maternity/paternity leaves are not credited towards the experience requirement)
- Be acquired within the previous 10 years with at least three months experience in the previous two years
Detailed information related to these criteria, as well as how to complete and submit the Validation of Experience application can be found in the Guide to the Validation of Experience.
It does not matter where an applicant earns their experience; if it meets the established criteria, experience earned outside Ontario or outside Canada will count towards the experience requirement.
Timing and Sequence of the Validation of Experience
An individual must be a member of HRPA in order to submit a Validation of Experience application. A member may submit a Validation of Experience application within two years before successfully completing the exam requirement, or within 10 years after successfully completing the exam requirement. The exam result is valid for 10 years and the Validation of Experience must be completed while the exam result is valid; if necessary, this 10-year validity period can be reset by re-writing and passing the National Knowledge Exam (NKE). As before, experience must be acquired within 10 years of the date that the Validation of Experience application is submitted for review, with at least three months of experience within the past two years at the time of submission. If successful, the Validation of Experience application result is valid for two years.
For many, the Validation of Experience application will be the last requirement to be met. Many new entrants to the HR field will meet the CHRP coursework requirement while completing a degree program and will then write the NKE, followed by earning the required experience before submitting a Validation of Experience application. For experienced members who have HR experience before pursuing certification, the Validation of Experience application could be the first requirement to be met (after membership).
In 2012, changes were made to the timeframes regarding the experience requirement for the CHRP designation. To view and learn more about these changes, please read: Important Changes to the Experience Requirement for the CHRP Designation.
Applying for the Validation of Experience
Validation of Experience applications are decided on the merits of the written application and supporting documentation. Accordingly, an applicant must submit all requested information, explanations and materials supporting the contention that experience requirements have been met. The cost for the Validation of Experience application consists of an initial fee of $100 (+HST). A $400 (+HST) remittance fee is due upon success of the application. Applicants may find it helpful to review the tips page when preparing their Validation of Experience application.
Review of Validation of Experience applications is conducted by panels of the HRPA's Certification Committee based on the evaluation guidelines. The deadlines for submission of Validation of Experience applications are the last business day of each month. Applications received by these deadlines will be processed within six to eight weeks of the submission deadline date. Results are sent via email to the email address on file with HRPA.
Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the Guide to the Validation of Experience in its entirety. Individuals with questions regarding the experience requirement are strongly encouraged to review the FAQs about the Validation of Experience and to contact the Office of the Registrar at email@example.com. Please note that HRPA staff cannot comment on whether an application will be successful and cannot comment on when a person should apply for the Validation of Experience.
Early Assessment Opinion
A common question CHRP Candidates have is, “Will my experience count?” This question can only be answered by the Certification Committee. HRPA now offers a service whereby candidates with as little as 12 months of experience may receive an opinion from the Certification Committee as to whether their experience will count toward the three-year experience requirement.
This service is subject to a $100 (+HST) processing fee. Should the experience be deemed at the professional level, candidates will need to apply to have their experience validated once the full three years have been achieved.
To apply, download the Validation of Experience Application Form - Early Assessment Opinion.
If your initial Validation of Experience application didn’t provide enough information to be successful, you may re-submit your application to provide more information.
If any part of your original application was successful, it will be submitted with the new application with a note to the Certification Committee as to what experience was previously approved. However, if you do not wish to have your previous application as part of your re-submission, it does not have to be included.
The fee for a re-submission $100 (+HST). If your application is successful upon re-submission, you would then be required to pay the remaining $400 (+HST) balance.
Research conducted by PayScale.com shows that human resources leaders with a CHRP designation are promoted faster, hired by larger companies and earn more than their counterparts who don't hold the CHRP designation. Certification as an HR professional has become an integral step to building a successful HR career.