The four pillars of Professionalism
By Marius Meyer, CEO: SA Board for People Practices (SABPP)
Last month we introduced you to the new national HR Competency Model of the SA Board for People
Practices (SABPP). As the HR standards-setting and professional body for HR, the aim of the model is to set a national standard for HR competence, and to provide HR professionals with a common framework for developing the required competencies in meeting the national standard. The model recognises that
HR professionals are at different levels, specialisations and stages in their careers, yet a common framework is intended to provide focus, consistency and development opportunities.
SA Board for People Practices
The competency model consists of three broad competence areas:
1. The four pillars of professionalism form the square shape of the “house” as the foundation for professional HR practice.
2. Five core competencies needed by HR professionals to do high quality HR work constitute the building blocks.
3. Five HR capabilities required to ensure strategic HR impact form the roof.
In this article we focus on the pillars of professionalism, i.e. duty to society, ethics, professionalism, as well as HR and Business knowledge. The central argument is that for HR to have an impact at the strategic and governance levels of organisations, we first need to get the basics right, not only to be regarded as true professionals, but also to develop our competence at the basic entry level where any profession gains stature and credibility, as the foundation of competence in any profession.
PILLARS OF HR PROFESSIONALISM
Drawing on the doctoral study by Penny Abbott at the University of Johannesburg, and master’s dissertation of Huma van Rensburg at the University of Pretoria, but reworked as part of the new national HR competency model, the four pillars of HR professionalism form the