Pros and cons to mutual recognition (Analysis)

Some worry U.S. influence may be too strong

As with previous surveys, respondents’ comments reflect a diversity of points of view.

Not surprisingly, a number of individuals who had moved from the United States or who work for American employers took the opportunity to comment. Many of these professionals had to start over when it came to their HR designation and felt some kind of recognition of their training and experience should have been given. Interestingly, more than one individual who had been required to start over noted how, in the end, it been beneficial to their careers.

As with anything that involves the U.S., some saw mutual recognition as opening up a world of opportunity whereas others saw a danger in being swallowed up by the American system. A number of HR professionals who had experience with the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development approach noted we had more to learn from our United Kingdom colleagues than our American neighbours.

There were interesting differences in opinion on how similar the practice of HR is across jurisdictions. Many consider it to be essentially the same — that the core is large.

On the other hand, an equally sizeable contingent feels the differences are significant, not only in the legal frameworks but more importantly in the culture of HR.

Many pointed out reciprocal recognition need not be an all-or-none proposition. Indeed, many suggested the “partial credit” would make the most sense; that is, individuals with HR designations from other jurisdictions should not necessarily be given the designation but, on the other hand, they should not be expected to start from scratch.

Claude Balthazard is director, HR excellence, at the Toronto-based Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA). He can be reached at (416) 923-2324 or [email protected] or visit

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