Effective August 1, 2018, candidates for the Professional in Human Resources® (PHR®) and Senior Professional in Human Resources® (SPHR®) exams should plan their study by reviewing new exam content outlines from HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®).
PHR and SPHR exams based on the new exam content outlines will be effective August 1, 2018.
No, the updates to the PHR and SPHR exam content outlines will not change the eligibility requirements for each exam.
That depends on you, and your HR experience. Please refer to the eligibility criteria as well as the new PHR and SPHR exam content outlines for details about what each exam covers. Select the exam that most closely aligns with your practice-based experience. The PHR is for professional-level HR practitioners and the SPHR is for senior-level HR leaders.
Compare your HR experience to the 2017 combined PHR/SPHR Exam Content Outline as well as the separate 2018 PHR Exam Content Outline and 2018 SPHR Exam Content Outline. If you want to take the PHR or SPHR exam before the new exam content outlines take effect, be sure to apply for and schedule your exam well before August 1 to allow for any last-minute emergencies that may require you to change your testing date. To take the new PHR or SPHR exam, schedule your exam date on or after August 1.
If you earn or earned a PHR and later earned an SPHR prior to August 1, 2018, you may only use the SPHR designation because the exams shared the same exam content outline during that time.
However, starting August 1, 2018:
Instead of six sections, the 2018 PHR Exam Content Outline will have five sections with new section names and weightings. The new PHR emphasizes the HR professional's role in business management, and employee and labor relations. Risk management remains important even though the responsibilities will now fall under the employee and labor relations heading. The changes reflect current HR practices and terminology.
Instead of six sections, the 2018 SPHR Exam Content Outline will have five sections with new section names and weightings. The new SPHR emphasizes the senior HR professional’s role in leadership and strategy, as well as employee relations and engagement. Risk management remains important and is found under the employee relations and engagement section. This section also includes employee performance, labor strategies, and diversity and inclusion.