Home' HR Monthly : March 2016 Contents 26
an Australia-wide HR certification based on the same principle
as CPA (Certified Practising Accountant). Having certified
practitioners in HR, working in companies, will bring even more
integrity to the profession," says Michelle Phipps.
The Phipps acknowledge that there will be HR people out there
who question the need for further qualifications; who will ask
why they should embark on more study when they have already
been qualified and working in HR for years.
"Yes, it is a question that will arise. But the truth is, I think
integrity and competency is lacking in certain areas. Disruption
will change the profession for the better and it will help AHRI to
ensure that the whole profession -- not just AHRI members -- are
on the same journey," says Rob.
The senior pathways program, which the two have recently
completed, was "similar to doing an assignment at university"
they say, except without the quantity of research, as it entails
reevaluating work that you have already done. Michelle chose
as her case study, the work she did on helping build a strategic
diversity and inclusion culture.
"It was based on setting up a diversity and inclusion council
and using employer resource groups (ERGs) to establish a vision,
charter and plan, not only at the executive level but at the team
member level, to contribute to the organisation's strategic agenda.
"Brown-Forman has a council in Australia and another in
south-east Asia. One of the ERGs is dedicated to helping women
play a greater role in the beer, wine and spirits industry. Another
has been built around LGBTQI awareness and extending the
company's sponsorship of Sydney's Mardi Gras.
"We are in the middle of building awareness around diversity
and inclusion, particularly inclusion, and the different ways to
involve our employees," says Phipps.
The senior pathways program requires the Phipps to detail and
demonstrate how they have applied their knowledge and skills in
the workplace, measured against AHRI's Model of Excellence. "I
was particularly proud of this project," says Michelle, "because it
really brings about cultural change and is linked to our local and
global company goals. I really felt that I led this one rather than
simply participated in another executive group initiative."
For her husband, it has involved diving deeper into what KFC
has been doing around engagement. "I'm outlining the way I've
brought an enterprise-based social network to life throughout our
organisation -- with our team members and restaurants. The aim
is to get 20,000 on board and, so far, we have 11,000 members.
It demonstrates to the casual employees on the front line that
the organisation has something to say beyond great customer
experience and service." Rob says it has married his HR skills
with marketing, with the departments working closely to bring
the project alive internally.
"We now have a cross-functional group across marketing,
operations and HR, deciding where content needs to be
published: internally or externally, in video or in the form of a
competition. All that is fairly new for me."
The Phipps have already submitted their projects, which will
be followed by interviews with representatives from AHRI to
demonstrate how the projects are aligned to AHRI's Model of
Excellence. Final assessment will be judged by the independently
appointed National Certification Council.
Michelle says the experience has been like a case study for a
masters level assignment but is less time consuming because you
are already working on the program. "It's a great way to recognise
the work that you are doing and have done and how you have
developed and changed," she says. Rob says being married to
someone doing the same thing has kept them both on course.
"Each evening, after dinner, we took several nights to make sure
we completed it and checked each other's work. But we were both
motivated -- you have to have the overall big picture view that the
profession needs something like this to happen."
"I REALLY FELT THAT I LED THIS PROJECT RATHER
THAN SIMPLY PARTICIPATED IN ANOTHER EXECUTIVE
MICHELLE PHIPPS, HR DIRECTOR FOR ASIA PACIFIC OF BROWN-FORMAN
For further information about senior pathways to AHRI
Certification, contact Monica Hyams, at:
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