It’s important to examine the competencies you would like to see in your organization and compare them to the competencies that a professional certificate holder can bring. But when we analyze competencies, we need to look at both expressed and implied competencies. The expressed competencies are those that are stated in the program, and may be technical or functional in nature. The implied competencies are the ones that are not stated by the program and take some inference to determine. In other words, these are the competencies that the certificate holder will most likely have because he or she went through the program successfully. Also keep in mind that you’ll want to look for competencies that are not only technical and functional, but also related to leadership and management.
The PRM certification brings numerous expressed competencies to your organization’s collective table. The successful completion of the program means that a person is well versed in risk management theory as well as practice, through the mathematics of risk management. The certificate holder must also have the ability to apply theoretical knowledge, as the exam tests application of knowledge, conduct, and ethics through case studies. The expressed competencies in the PRM program are mainly technical and functional in nature.
But let’s analyze the program a little further to look for implied competency for a PRM certificate holder. First, the multiple-choice format of the exams provides us with a picture of someone who is good at making decisions. The fact that the program is self-directed in nature paints a picture of a professional who has drive, determination, and focus. As we’ve mentioned, not all adult learners possess the competency to get through a self-directed study program successfully. Translated into the organizational world, this person will probably have the ability to work well independently.
Because the PRM program allows a candidate to self-assess, you’re going to get a professional who is able to address his or her weaknesses. This is not just acknowledgement of a weakness but the ability to correct that weakness through action, study, or other intervention. The choice between online and classroom preparation also ensures that the professional knows his or her own learning style and can apply it quickly and easily to the learning process. Plus, in relation to learning, a successful completion of the PRM shows you that the person is open to being coached, trained, and managed in a positive direction. All of these combined competencies create a great profile for a potential organizational leader.
The FRM certification through GARP also carries a high level of technical and functional competency, such as market risk, credit risk, and operational risk. The FRM also tests risk management in investment management. Again, this certification proves a certain ability to take knowledge, synthesize it, and apply it to common situations.
In terms of implied competency, the FRM shows us that the certificate holder, because of the elite size of the network, has the ability to see him or herself a part of a larger group. The fact that the person chose the FRM designation shows that he or she is dedicated to the furtherance of the profession and not just interested in his or her own self-interest. It’s also necessary to again consider that a self-directed learner has proven an ability to focus and drive projects through to completion.
In regard to the ERP certification through GARP, we can also see a high level of technical and functional competency, including physical energy markets, financial trading instruments, and valuation and structure of energy related transactions. Because there are specific experience requirements to even sit for the exams, we can also assume a higher level of experience in what is certainly a specialized field.
On the implied level, the ERP certificate holder not only shows his or her determination and focus, but also a level of devotion to a specialized field. When you add the continuing education requirement to this mix, you’ll also see a professional who is certain that he or she is in the field on a permanent basis.
Why are expressed and implied competencies important to your organization? One of the most obvious reasons is that you want to ensure that people in specific positions have a measurable level of functional and technical competency. All of these certification programs prove this competency, as well as experience. But what about bringing in certified professionals as part of your overall leadership “bench” strategy? If you are actively recruiting professionals with the designation, you can be assured that you are going to create a bench of high professional leaders, that is, the ones who can lead and manage functions in their own field. But when you look at the implied competency of these certification programs, you can also be assured that some of those professionals will be high potential leaders, that is, the ones who can be groomed for leadership and management across a spectrum of functional and technical areas.
If you are considering certifying existing associates, think about how that will improve your existing “bench”. The people who readily enter a certification program are proving that they are dedicated to the profession and dedicated to the organization’s future success. Not only this, they are obviously open to being coached and “schooled” on the most current industry knowledge.
Now that we’ve looked at the FRM, PRM, and ERP certifications generally, examined the curricula and exam structures, analyzed recognition and standard, and discovered competencies, the last step is to look at the overall picture of how these things can help your organization.