Comments are closed. This week’s lettersA tipping point for reward?The decision of the CIPD to create a certificate in reward management (News,17 February) marks a watershed in the development of the UK personnel function.It recognises that reward has established itself as a discrete specialism andacknowledges a responsibility to populate the marketplace with competentprofessionals. Unlike the US, with separate professional institutes serving trainers, generalists(SHRM) and compensation practitioners (World at Work, formerly the AmericanCompensation Association), UK reward practitioners have felt bereft ofcontinuing professional development. For organisations, the exponential growth in demand for capable rewardpractitioners has merely exhausted the talent pool and created significant paydifferentials. By extension, this talent pool is increasingly replenished bythose without a background in personnel, such as accountants and actuaries. I am passionate about re-stocking the reward talent pool with seasonedpersonnel practitioners – those with the breadth and insight to be the‘guardians of motivation’. Effective reward managers of the future will not be ‘back office’compensation and benefits specialists. They will be those who understand thecircumstances in which employees deliver discretionary effort and who are ableto deploy a body of knowledge to create and sustain employee engagement. Thisis a much higher calling than the mediocre ambition to deliver compensation andbenefits solutions designed to ‘recruit and retain’. Recent developments withinthe CIPD invite generalists into this arena. They also create a chance forreward practitioners to develop a depth of insight and capability sufficient tomake a seismic difference in the places they work. Mark Childs Vice-president, Reward, CIPD Employee is the final arbiter for pensions I bristled at the quote from David Yeandle of the Engineering Employers’Federation (News, 17 February). If HR is to be encouraged to lead, it must question received wisdom aboutpensions, which have failed a large swathe of the working population. I question the quote from the EEF: “As members are the ultimatebeneficiaries of these insurance arrangements, it is only reasonable thatemployers should be able to share the cost of financing the PPF by recoveringat least part of the levy from members”. Broadly true, except for thephrase “ultimate beneficiary”, as though employees were the solebeneficiaries of the operation of a pension scheme. Take time to consider howemployers have benefited from pension schemes. – In recent years, companies have been taken over for the value of theirpension surpluses – Some employers have reduced their own pension costs by running offsurpluses over many years and/or taken pension holidays – Employers running contracted out pension schemes have paid lower NI costsfor many years – Are there not tax exemptions on corporation tax for contributions intopension schemes? – For schemes that close for insolvency, the company has to make up the fundto the minimum funding requirement level if it can, not to the accrued benefitlevel – The winding up of a final salary scheme in insolvent companies can fall onthe members for administration costs, often running into millions of pounds – The shortfall in the fund is met by the active members – The debt to maintain retired members is met by the active members – Pension funds are now taxed more heavily by the exchequer. Approaching this business as though it is garnished in favour of theemployee is a false start. Many employees are going to fall outside thecompensation scheme and may have lost much of their life’s pension with noredress. Rancour on this issue will be deep and long lasting. It is good to have a compensation scheme but it has unfairly divided theworking population. How many still in final salary plans appreciate they are nolonger the gold standard in pensions and can still pose great risks to members?It was confirmed by the Goode Commission that the surplus belonged to theemployer because it was the final arbiter in making the fund good. Experiencein many schemes has demonstrated that the employee has been the final arbiterfor pension schemes and that he or she had no pension holiday or contributionreduction in most cases. Christopher Hore Personnel manager, Crest Packaging Key is understanding membership’s role I have been reading the ongoing debate in Personnel Today about thenecessity of being fully CIPD qualified to enter the tough HR market. I havebeen in a role for five years with a wealth of experience and am partly CIPDqualified. Studying via flexi-learning, and funding myself, has been enormouslychallenging along with the busy hours of an HR role. I recently started looking for a new role commensurate to my abilities andexperience, which would also offer me greater room to continue with my CIPDstudies. I have been shocked by the ineptitude and arrogance of the HRrecruitment agencies I have tried to use. I have not dealt with a single agencythat has offered anything resembling a service. If anyone is responsible for the impossibility of finding a role withoutbeing fully CIPD qualified, it is not the CIPD but the HR agencies and theirdaft sculpting of an employment market that insists on all candidates beingfully CIPD qualified. Are our colleagues in the HR departments that we seek to enter so deluded ormyopic that they will only accept chartered members of the CIPD for their positions,often offering salaries that ought to be considered for entry level roles letalone positions demanding three to five years experience and full CIPD? I have worked long enough in the field to know that many of the HR openingscould ably be filled by new entrants to the CIPD field, albeit with sometraining and mentoring. The solution to this problem is not to berate the CIPD or its standards, butto encourage our colleagues to talk to their recruitment consultants abouttheir vacancies and to explain to them what CIPD qualifications mean alongside,and in relation to, experience. Details supplied No qualification can prepare you for HR In my experience, many employers ask for a CIPD qualification without reallyknowing what it means. They think it will guarantee they get someone capable.In my 22 years in HR, I have found no qualification that can prepare you forthe real world of HR. Michelle Bailey Interim HR manager, The Rubicon Corporation Ltd CIPD of little benefit to the experienced… I empathise with Gina Patterson’s criticism of the CIPD qualification(Letters, 17 February). I graduated with a business and law degree six years ago and I am now anexperienced HR adviser, looking to take the next step in my career – into HRmanagement. I have already stumbled at the first hurdle, as I do not have theCIPD qualification. I too found the course commitments difficult while workingfull-time, and the fees are expensive. In my experience, the CIPD qualification is often the only ‘essential’criteria in job ads, even for positions requiring minimal experience. The onething that really annoys me is that, on the occasions I have challenged arecruiter’s specific requirement of the CIPD qualification for a role, they areoften unable to even tell me what the content of the course is, let alone whatits benefit would be to a particular position. I have no doubt that to someone starting out on the career ladder, with noexperience, the CIPD course would be beneficial, but to a seasoned professionalwith references backing up a solid work career, I can find little benefit. Tamasine Hickey Details supplied … But you won’t get far in HR without it I am very surprised by Gina Patterson’s comments (Letters, 17 February). Itmust be frustrating to find you have studied the wrong degree and will have tostudy some more. But don’t blame the CIPD or undermine its reputation andvalue. If you knew that you wanted a career in HR, you should have done yourresearch and chosen a post-graduate course that was CIPD accredited in HRmanagement. It is tough holding down a full-time job and studying at the sametime, but many of us chartered members have done it. The benefits of being part of the CIPD are too many to mention here. Take alook at the CIPD website and the recruitment pages of Personnel Today. Youwon’t get far in your HR career without CIPD membership. Lorren Price Details supplied LettersOn 2 Mar 2004 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.