At #SHRM13, Free Online Human Resources Classes – Ask @HRBartender

by Sharlyn Lauby on June 16, 2013

Today’s note from a reader focuses on something we all should be doing – keeping our skills up-to-date.

Hey Sharlyn. I didn’t attend college to study Human Resources. Actually, I went to beauty school. I’m currently an administrative assistant in the HR department of a fabulous software company. I love my job –  love, Love, LOVE IT! I just want to be able to do it better.

Aside from your great blog, I haven’t found much out there to help me further my education. Do you have any suggestions for online classes someone could take to better their knowledge of the HR world? Any that are state specific? My company will reimburse me for the classes, but I know some companies don’t. Are there any good free classes out there?

Thank you so much for the kind words about HR Bartender. I really do appreciate it.

HR, Human Resources, classes, online, SHRM, MOOC, Tweetchats, training, free, programs

I didn’t get a degree in human resources either. I took a certificate program in human resources from a local college. This might be an option if your company reimburses you or your company has a tuition reimbursement program if they consider it a qualifying program. These programs are typically offered online, in person, as well as a blended format.

Another option is the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM) Essentials of HR Management course. You can find details about the program here, including a free demo.

Affiliate human resources associations often can provide specifics about any local, state or county laws. I find much of this information at local chapter meetings. SHRM provides a listing of all their affiliated chapters on their website. Many local employment law firms will host a day of education for the human resources community. If your company has a relationship with a law firm, be sure to ask.

If you’re looking for free programs, one place I always recommend is iTunesU. There are complete human resources management classes you can subscribe to – all FREE! If you don’t have iTunes, you can check out the MOOCs (massive open online courses) being offered by universities. For example, there’s a strategic HR management course being offered by MIT Sloan School of Management.

Lastly, don’t forget to take advantage of more informal methods of learning via social media. I learn a lot by reading blogs and participating in Tweetchats. I also hear about webinars on timely topics like the Affordable Care Act.

When you’re looking for HR professional development, where do you turn? Leave your suggestion in the comments.

Are you using the Google Reader service? If so you need to switch: Google Reader is shutting down on 1st July! But fear not — you can easily transfer your favorite feeds to a new service. Check out these alternative options and make the switch now! Or you can sign up to receive HR Bartender directly in your email.

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Rebecca June 16, 2013 at 10:51 am

Labor and Employment law firms usually offer legal updates for low or no cost each year. These are a great opportunity to stay current on legal issues.

Kyle Jones July 2, 2013 at 1:03 pm

I agree that the SHRM Essentials of HR Management is a great starting point. I recently facilitated a 2-day version of the course where the participants ranged from seasoned HR to someone in sales considering an HR move. Regardless of the method you choose for your content, know that there are a variety of sources out there that will help you on your HR journey. THe HR Blogging community is an excellent way to interact with HR pros but also obtain an insight into the HR industry.
Kyle Jones recently posted..Hello 2013 – Six Month Blog Performance Review

Sharlyn Lauby July 2, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Thanks for the comments. I think HR is one of those professions that you can enter several different ways. So finding good (and reasonably priced) professional development is important.

Diane September 7, 2013 at 8:50 am

Your blog is wonderful for someone new to the HR field. Thank you for all the links to sources of information for training.

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