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The Human Resources Institute of New Zealand

Human Resources Institute of New Zealand (HRINZ) is the professional body for those involved in Human Resource Management and the development of people.

HRINZ represents the interests of 3,000+ individual members who make up around 45% of the known New Zealand HR market. Read More

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Tertiary Education Advisory Commission

Submission to the Tertiary Eductation Advisory Commission June 2000

Context

In particular, HRINZ refers to the 'Government's Vision for the Tertiary Education Sector' and in particular:

  • a more co-operative and collaborative tertiary education sector; and

  • a greater sense of partnership between the key contributors to the sector, including individuals, local communities and industry.

The aims of this submission are to:

  • establish with the Commission, HRINZ' central role in representing the interests of Human Resources professionals in New Zealand;

  • bring to the Commission's attention:

    • the present situation regarding the professional development for HR practitioners in New Zealand;

    • our desire for a more structured and consistent approach to HR professional development in New Zealand, consistent with approaches taken overseas;

    • the need for more collaboration between tertiary education providers and HRINZ.

Present situation

The present situation in New Zealand regarding the professional development of Human Resources professionals is that there exists 'A Framework for the Professional Development of Personnel Practitioners' published by the Institute of Personnel Management of New Zealand, the predecessor body to HRINZ. This document outlines the competencies required for professional development.

A New Zealand Qualifications Authority working party, the Business and Management National Standards Body developed 24 Unit Standards in Human Resources Management. Whilst there are 73 Accredited Providers in New Zealand, no Human Resources Management Unit Standards are registered at any of these Providers.

However, a number of courses in Human Resources Management delivered by Universities and Polytechnics under the auspices of their own institution.

HRINZ' concerns

  1. Our central concern is that providers do not appear to have taken on board the desires of the profession as expressed in the Unit Standards. The Unit Standards "have been developed by a working party of HR specialists and education professionals who consulted widely within New Zealand and took account of best international practice as well."
    National Standards for Business and Management - Human Resources Management

  2. Those aspiring to become HR practitioners and students, do not have adequate guidance from existing providers about the various 'routes' to entry into the profession. For those early in their HR careers professional development needs to be more structured than it presently is.

  3. We submit that there is a clear need for those tertiary education institutions delivering courses on Human Resource Management [and related courses] to pay more attention to the needs of industry and of the HR profession.

Recommendations

HRINZ invites the Commission to use its best offices to encourage greater collaboration between HRINZ and tertiary providers in the professional development of human resources professionals.

Our preference would be to have the 24 NZQA Unit Standards Qualifications registered and delivered in tertiary education institutions. We note, however, the reluctance of the tertiary providers to be bound by unit standards. The issue is then raised as to what extent are the human resources management courses delivered by tertiary education institutions:

  • meeting the needs of those wishing to pursue a career in Human Resource Management;

  • relevant to modern Human Resources Management;

HRINZ does not wish to become a provider of such courses. However, HRINZ does wish to have the voice of HR professionals included in planning and delivery by course providers.

The most appropriate role for HRINZ is that of 'broker'. This would entail:

  • providing advice to prospective HR professionals concerning existing courses and recommending providers;
  • reaching agreements with tertiary providers concerning:

    • the content of Degrees, Certificates and Diplomas;

    • a role in providing advice and support to students about their ongoing professional development throughout their HR career;

    • establishing the equivalence of various qualifications (degrees and diplomas) leading to Certification by HRINZ

Conclusion

In Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada and the United States, the providers of HR management education cooperate with the relevant professional bodies to provide a clear professional development framework to guide the early careers of HR managers.

Given the international trend for qualifications that are both national and portable, the situation in New Zealand is not in keeping with international practice and therefore HRINZ invites the Commission to facilitate the professional development of HR professionals in New Zealand.

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