Justifying The Selection Of Human Resource Professional Organization Management

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Career management is a complex procedure of planning and achieving personal objectives and strategies which enable the company to answer its own needs regarding the use and he development human resources. It also encourages employees to take control of their own development in order to maintain and enhance their employability. Legge (1978) and Watson (1977) argue that doubts have been cast on the extent to which personnel or HRM can be classed as a real profession. However, encouragement to become more professional abounds from academic commentators and professional bodies (Armstrong, 2000). HR practitioners themselves perceive value in improving their professionalism (Badger and Sadler, 1998).

Millerson (1964) argues that professionalism of an occupation entails the prescription of acceptable standards of performance controlling the body of knowledge from which the professional practitioner draws. It is in these process that need for professional association is noted. Greenwood et al., (2002) argue that professional association, through the routines they create for licensing, professional development, training, monitoring and disciplining of behavior are mechanisms of reproduction rather than of change. They allow organizations within the same community to interact. According to Dobbin e al., (1993) common professional practice becomes socially constructed by networks of professional and external observers. This leads to professional bodies being able to control the selection and socialization of new recruits and the conditions for holding a position within the trade (Powell, 1991). Millerson (1964) argued that the four overreaching goals of what he terms qualifying association are a means of ensuring professional standards, extending educational, industrial and other facilities, an organized voice of the profession and making contribution to a wider society.

Professional management organizations

The debate on professionalism has come along with the establishment of several professional bodies worldwide. Human resource professional organizations vary in size, when they were established and their activities for their members.

Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM)

This is the largest national association by membership. It was started in 1948 and only adopted its current name in 1989. This association has over 250, 000 members and over 200 employees in over 140 countries. This association is devoted to human resource management. It serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession.

The main objectives of this association are to produce resources to the HR community. This association also goes an extra mile to ensure human resource management practices make a difference on organizations. It is also influential in advancing the HR profession. Caldwell (2003) argues that the benefits of joining this association are several for example the association encourages networking among its members by functional area or area of interest, SHRM provides resources, best global practices and a network of valuable contacts to more than 4, 400 members in 140 different countries,

Access to resources members can download policies, job descriptions and sample forms, free access to the HR knowledge centre. The association also offers a testing centre which is the largest resource for online employment. Members also get access to SHRM publications, research and customized reports. Armstrong (2000) argues that members are also updated on the workplace trends and forecasting and finally the association also offers training to HR professionals. The membership fees plus the annual subscription fees required when joining and still in the association may be considerably high to some but there is a need for a cost benefit analysis when making entry decision.

Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)

This is the second largest association in terms of membership, with a membership of more than 135, 000. This association started as the Welfare Workers Association in UK. This association is concerned with managing and developing personnel. A connection to and membership in this association is greatly respected and widely accepted by employers as a requirement of practice. This association serves the professional interests of the members, upholds high ideals in the management of personnel. It also merits a leading position in developing and fostering competent practice in personnel management for use by all their members and affiliated organizations.

Joining this professional association comes along with several benefits to the members and they include; receiving discounts in form of, professional indemnity insurance, members also saveĀ 10% or more on books, training courses, conferences, leisure and business merchandise and services this association also gives the members a chance to network and develop through several way for example, during conferences, special interests forums, training courses and podcasts. To keep members up to date with the current business and professional information, the association utilizes newspapers and newsletters, journal resources, news and electronic mail alerts.

This organization helps the members to access professional resources which include printed materials such as books, survey reports and other publications. Other resources provided include internet resources in form of journals, company profiles and magazines. The association also helps the members to enhance their careers; it does so by giving the members a human resource professional map which is a comprehensive view of the profession now and the future. It also provides a human resource self assessment tool online for the members, which guides members on developing their careers. The membership is widely accepted by various employees and as such it improves the member's careers through professional recognition. The cost of joining this association is however, high the admission fee is 125 pounds and a similar subscription fees with a renewal every year in July.

Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI)

This is the countrywide organization representing human resource and people management professionals and currently has over 14,000 members. The association has over 60 years experience in providing education, membership services and professional development. AHRI leads the direction and encourages the growth of HR profession through actively setting standards and building the capacity of the profession. The association makes sure that members are given access to professional recognition framework. It also acknowledges the continuity opportunity for the HR profession to actively contribute specialist knowledge for the delivery of people management solutions to business.

AHRI members are mostly human resource and people management experts. They include HR consultants, managers, general practitioners, directors and line managers. The organization also helps the members to improve their career; it does so by guiding the members on how to assess their career progress. The association also asks for considerable amount of cash in terms of membership fees and the annual subscriptions. Though this amount may seem much the benefits of attaining membership to the association should however not be overlooked.

Arabian society for human resource management

This organization was founded in 1991; it is mainly involved in managing and advancing human resources and providing an avenue for the exchange and distribution of expert information in this field. It serves the needs of human resource management profession in the Arab world by providing the most essential and comprehensive resources available. This Association is also devoted to advancing this profession in Arab countries. In doing so, they aspire to ensure that human resource professionals have adequate capacities of fostering organizational strategies effectively. Membership is welcomed from all business workforce management professionals, students pursuing a degree associated to human resource management, and other people whose goals match the objectives of the organization. The variety, creativity and drive of this membership are to ASHRM`s success since its founded in Dahran, Saudi Arabia 1991.

Dubai Human Resource Forum (DHRF)

The Dubai Human Resource Forum (DHRF) was started in the mid 1970`s by a group of HR managers who were driven by the desire to socialize and create networks, share information and experiences and to look for better ways of advancing their profession. The forum invites anyone who is related to this profession and desires to pursue similar goals. Dubai Human Resource Forum (DHRF) has over 300 members representing over 150 companies from most organizations and fields in the Emirates. The DHRF is a member of Chartered Institute of Personnel Development in the UK. This forum seeks to encourage those interested in gaining professional competence in this field. Regardless of it being a forum, it was registered as a professional organization in 2002. According to Caldwell (2003) the majority of the HR professionals are based in Dubai and they work together to promote knowledge, encourage development and best practices and to create networks with fellow professionals. The annual membership fee for joining this association is 300 AED while that of students is half the normal cost. Some of the benefits of joining this association include access to the DHRF members' area, free attendance to all standard events and discounts to conferences.

Justification for selection of a professional association

Having analyzed the role played by the human resource professional association above, it is important to state that they play a key role in managing the HR profession. The professional in this field would manage and develop their careers better if they are members of such professional associations. According to Raymond (2009) career management is not only beneficial to the employees but also to the company. Companies that want employees to give their best must also recognize the need for and give support to the employees to develop their careers.

Of all the above discussed professional association as a human resource I would join the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). The reasons for selecting this organization over the others is that it has so many professional members which gives a good network platform for one willing to develop and manage his career. Membership of this association is greatly respected and widely accepted by employers as a requirement of practice. Anthony & Crichton (1969) argue that there is also a changing nature of the career concept. There is more need for psychological success than salary increment.

This association would help serve my professional interests, upholds highest ideals in the management development of my career, it would also play a big role in the development of competent professionals in this field. Members and their organizations are accorded critical resources for enhancing their capacities and capabilities for good professional practice (Anthony & Crichton, 1969). Joining this professional association would help me as an HR professional to enjoy several benefits which include; receiving discounts in form of, professional indemnity insurance, books, and conferences among others. It also provides the chance to network and develop through several way for example, during conferences, special interests forums, training courses and podcasts.

In assisting members to keep up to date with the current business and professional information, the association offers numerous resource materials in form of journals, magazines, websites and library services among others. The association also could help in enhancing my career. The association would also provide several career management systems such as the self assessment tool that is normally online for the members. The above professional bodies play a big role in the HR profession career management and development. These associations recognize the changing nature of the HR career concept and they work to ensure that the professional in this field develop their careers effectively. Being a member to such association will help the HR professionals to enhance their careers.


Raymond (2009) argues that the image emerging of HRM professionalism across the globe is one of a field in which there is an active sense of community distinctiveness; where guidelines and training on expert activities and codes of ethics are readily available; and where there is a common body of knowledge from which the field is drawing. There is thus, indeed, substantiation for professional organizations within the profession. However, there is no obligatory requirement for specialists to be members of these professional bodies. However, there are numerous benefits for a professional to be a member of any of the professional association.

Having analyzed a few human resource professional associations, there is need for all the HR professionals who are willing to succeed or move to greater heights in their career to join a professional association. The associations are good platforms for the professionals to develop their careers. There is also much training and other benefits that come about by only being members to such associations most of which professionals would not like to miss.

The HR professionals should also be very keen and aware of these associations before making the decision to join any of them. This can be attributed to the fact that the benefits and costs of joining these association vary from one to the other. The professional should look for the association that gives value for their money. This means that the professional body should meet the member's professional and personal interests (Raymond 2009, p. 471).

It is worth noting that it will be fascinating to watch developments over the next few years as associations continue to develop and collaborate. A good example is the Chartered status of CIPD in the UK and the attempts to develop associations in countries like Hong Kong, Turkey and Greece. There is an increasing demand for professionalization.

Summary and Recommendations

In summary this paper has clearly shown the need for the human resource professional associations. It has been noted that the career concept is changing with time and as such this should be move hand in hand with effective career management. Professional associations play a big role in the management of the human resource profession. Career management benefits both the employees and the companies that they work for. Human resource professionals have a right to choose the organizations they want to join, it is however not compulsory that they must be members of a certain professional association. There are also many forms of development in these associations and a number of them have gone on to venture into new countries.

This paper recommends that for human resources to effectively manage their careers they must be affiliated to a professional association. These professional associations provide the platform for the professional to manage and develop their careers. Though it is not an obligation for the employees to join these associations the companies that want to succeed must incorporate human development in their schedule. The companies' mangers must encourage their employees to join professional associations. Companies should subscribe to such professional bodies to help their employees become affiliated members. On the other hand, there is a growing demand for professionalization in the human resource field. The association should therefore be in a position to cater for this demand. These associations should be ready to enter into new markets and collaborate with other associations in the field. This will make them even more attractive to the professional who to them diversity is of great benefit.

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