I have two years’ HR experience which has largely involved dabbling withpersonnel systems. I have now decided to specialise in this side of thefunction, but as it is on the border of HR and IT, I am unsure which step totake as far as training and qualifications are concerned. Should I still pursuethe CIPD course or is there something more specific? Clive Sussums, recruitment consultant, Malpas Flexible Learning There is no doubt that most progressive HR functions will have need forhighly competent system specialists as the nature of analysis and reportingchanges with the demands of the business. There are various points to consider: 1 You will be very marketable if you have a wide range of knowledge of HRsoftware packages. Many companies recruit staff to work on certain systems anddevelop them to fit their particular needs. 2 If you do not already have good skills in packages such as Excel andAccess, you should improve these as soon as possible. This will, for example,offer you the possibility of obtaining experience in remuneration and benefitswork. 3 HR and IT are, therefore, interconnected and you would be best advised tobe as competent as possible in the software that will have an impact on the HRfunction. 4 You should be up to date with all developments in the market. Jo Selby, associate director, EJ Human Resources HR software systems is a specialist area, while there is demand forspecialists, in-house opportunities tend to be with larger organisations.Whether you approach it from an IT or HR perspective will depend on whichaspects of the work you enjoy most. I suggest you research both options further before making your decision,looking at the content of both roles and the longer-term career opportunities.This in turn will help you decide whether to pursue an additionalqualification, and if so, which route to pursue. Peter Lewis, consultant, Chiumento The existing growth in IT-based HR solutions is likely to continue as morecompanies appreciate the benefits of a reduced administration load on the HRteam by introducing direct records access by employees as well as greaterintegration of recruitment, training and manpower planning. Leading-edge IT companies tend to value experience over formalqualifications. While a qualification may be relevant to your longer-termcareer goals, in the short term your decision will depend partly onunderstanding which aspects of the job you enjoy most. If you prefer working closely with HR, your long-term career choice could bean HR role in a computerised department, or a sales/ installation/consultingrole with a supplier of HR solutions. A preference for a more technical roleraises the question of which software systems you wish to specialise in.Research which firms look like good, long-term bets, then find out whattraining they require. A number of major players provide their own training. While attendance onthese will not guarantee you a job, it is usually a necessary precondition forwork in this field. Previous Article Next Article How can I step into HR systems?On 20 Nov 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.