Erin O'Flynn is the first participant to earn the IRC's Advanced HR Certificate. She is pictured here with IRC Director Paul Juniper, who spearheaded the creation of the Advanced HR programming and the Advanced HR Certificate.
When Paul Juniper became the Director of Queen's University Industrial Relations Centre (IRC) in 2006, he recognized the need for more senior level training in the changing human resources (HR) profession. To accomplish this, he designed a new series of Advanced HR programs to enhance the strategic knowledge, ability, and capability of HR practitioners. The goal was to enable HR practitioners to shift from an administrative and/or transactional role, to one that has become an integral part of an organization's business strategy – an HR business partner.
By 2012, with a series of Advanced HR programming in place, the Advanced HR Certificate was introduced. This spring, Erin O'Flynn became the first IRC participant to earn this coveted certificate.
O'Flynn, who is the Director of Human Resources at Cogeco Data Services Inc., started her training with Queen's IRC in 2008, with the popular Negotiation Skills program. While she had a wish list of IRC programs she would like to take, she wasn't sure it would ever happen. "Training dollars are so scarce," she said. "But over time, I was given the chance to take one here and one there, and then I just needed one more." That one more was the Linking HR Strategy to Business Strategy program, which O'Flynn completed in April 2013.
"The most beneficial programs for me were the Advanced HR, and Linking HR Strategy to Business Strategy programs." O'Flynn noted that the focus on culture change, how to become a business ally, and change management from a business perspective, were all key takeaways for her.
"I was at a point in my career where the programs underpinned everything I had learned to date, and they helped me to finesse what I've learned as an HR professional."
IRC Spring 2013 Article Review
Stephanie Noel, Queen's IRC Business Development Manager
It's hard to believe that 2013 is already half over. As we prepare to enjoy the summer with our family and friends, I would like to take a minute to thank all the sponsors, and the participants who attended programs this spring. Congratulations to those who have earned their certificates.
In the fall, we launched our new Advanced HR Certificate, and we celebrated the 75th anniversary of industrial relations at Queen's. This spring, our brand new program, Linking HR Strategy to Business Strategy, was a great success. Our practitioner-focused research projects included surveys of HR practitioners – in Canada, we conducted An Inquiry into the State of HR in Canada in 2013, and with our partners at the Cave Hill School of Business in Barbados, we conducted a similar survey, An Inquiry into the State of HR in the Caribbean. Watch for the results to be released this fall.
As I look over the list of papers and articles we have released this year, I am proud of the work we are doing to help LR, HR, and OD practitioners identify and address key issues and challenges in their organizations. I encourage you to take a few minutes and review these excellent articles.
The IRC has been hard at work on a new website. In addition to an updated look, the new site will offer improved browsing performance, and mobile compatibility. Stay tuned this summer for more details!