Each exam is built from knowledge determined by HR practitioners. These practitioners extensively research HR tasks and the knowledge needed to perform these tasks. These tasks and this knowledge is grouped into functional areas. This research is conducted through a practice analysis study, which is grouped into the following stages:
- review of journal articles and job descriptions to determine HR practice trends
- one-on-one interviews with practitioners
- selection of a team 10 HR subject-matter experts to write a body of knowledge based on the findings of the review and interviews
- validation survey of HR professionals to rate how frequently they perform each task in the body of knowledge and to rate the importance of each task and knowledge statement in their day-to-day job duties
- review of the survey results by the task force to remove unimportant tasks and knowledge statements
The final exam content (also known as the body of knowledge) is used by exam question writers and organizations that develop study/preparation materials.
The exam content is updated every five years.