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In today’s rapidly evolving job market, traditional hiring practices that focus solely on academic degrees are becoming outdated. Recognizing this shift, the SHRM Foundation, in collaboration with the Charles Koch Foundation, has announced an exciting new partnership and the launch of the “Ready for Success: Adopting a Skills Mindset in Employment Practices” toolkit. This alliance aims to equip employers with the necessary tools and training to embrace skills-based hiring and navigate the emerging skills-based economy.

The Rise of Skilled Credentials

Last year, the SHRM Foundation introduced its “Skilled Credentials at Work” campaign, urging employers to reconsider their hiring practices and prioritize individuals with credentials and certifications over traditional degrees. The Foundation’s research report, “The Rise of Skilled Credentials,” highlighted the need for more resources and discussions surrounding the value of skilled credentials in connecting qualified individuals with suitable job opportunities.

Skills-Based Hiring has taken off in recent years, due to the demand for talent in the job market—instead of focusing on education and degrees for a certain role, employers turned to requiring certain skills. This opens the job market to the general public who had previously been boxed out by degree inflation.

Empowering Employers for the Future

Through their partnership, the SHRM Foundation and the Charles Koch Foundation seek to empower employers to broaden their hiring pools and adapt to the demands of the evolving job market. The collaboration will focus on developing practical tools and training that facilitate effective skills-based hiring and retention strategies. By embracing these strategies, companies can overcome talent recruitment and retention challenges across various industries.

Revolutionizing Hiring Practices

As Wendi Safstrom, President of the SHRM Foundation, emphasizes, “Businesses looking to succeed going forward must continue to evolve their hiring practices.” Recognizing that the United States has transitioned into a skills-based economy, employers must adopt skills-based hiring practices within their HR departments to thrive in this new environment. An upcoming panel at SHRM23 (“How a Whole Human Talent Strategy Can Make You a Hiring Hero“) will explore how HR professionals can adjust their mindset and systems to recognize and accommodate individuals’ aptitudes, talents, and skills.


The Skilled Credentials Toolkit

At the core of this partnership lies the skilled credentials toolkit, a comprehensive resource designed to help workplaces enhance their hiring practices and promote diversity. The toolkit offers 12 actionable steps organized into three categories—technology-enabled steps, job promotion communications, and organizational changes. By following these steps, employers can align their technology to source candidates with relevant skilled credentials, effectively communicate organizational needs, and create a more inclusive workplace culture.

The skilled credentials panel and toolkit mark only the beginning of an ongoing effort to drive the adoption of skills-based hiring practices in the world of work. Employers who embrace these strategies today will position themselves for success in a rapidly changing job market. To learn more about the skilled credentials campaign and access the toolkit, visit the SHRM Foundation’s website.


Looking Ahead

The collaboration between the SHRM Foundation and the Charles Koch Foundation represents a significant step toward reshaping hiring practices in the modern workplace. As industries transition into a skills-based economy, employers must adapt their hiring approaches to identify and leverage the potential of every individual. By prioritizing skills-based hiring, companies can unlock a wealth of talent, enhance diversity, and create a more inclusive and dynamic workforce. With the skilled credentials toolkit and the SHRM23 panel, employers are well-equipped to embark on this transformative journey towards a skills-focused hiring.


This blog is taken from SHRM, Harvard Business Review, HR Dive.