SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP Exam Eligibility

Apr 16, 2020by Eduyush Team

The SHRM Competency Model is fundamental to SHRM's two certifications: the SHRM-CP for early to mid-career practitioners and the SHRM-SCP for senior-level practitioners. These certifications address two basic goals:

  • For HR professionals, these certifications recognize the importance of both competencies and knowledge as essential elements for successful job performance.

  • For employers, they affirm the need to look for competencies and knowledge as key indicators of successful HR job performance.

SHRM exam applicants are required to meet specific educational and work experience at the time they submit their application. The following general eligibility criteria, shown in table, will also apply:

  • Applicants must show that they have at least 1,000 hours within a calendar year devoted to HR-related activities. This equates to a year of HR-related experience. (More than 1,000 hours does not equate to more than 1 year of experience.)

Table 2-2: SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP Exam Eligibility Criteria


Less than a Bachelor's Degree*

Bachelor's Degree

Graduate Degree

Less than a bachelor's degree includes working toward a bachelor's degree, associate's degree, some college, qualifying HR certificate program, high school diploma, or GED.


HR-related program

Non-HR program

HR-related degree

Non-HR degree

HR-related degree

Non-HR degree


3 years in HR role

4 years in HR role

1 year in HR role

2 years in HR role

Currently in HR role

1 year in HR role


6 years in HR role

7 years in HR role

4 years in HR role

5 years in HR role

3 years in HR role

4 years in HR role

  • HR-related experience is any work within the 15 functional areas of HR knowledge that make up the technical competency HR Expertise, as explained in the SHRM BoCK.
  • Part-time work qualifies, as long as the 1,000-hour requirement is met within a calendar year.
  • HR experience may be in an exempt or nonexempt capacity.
  • Applicants are not required to hold an HR title. HR-related work determines eligibility, not the job title.
  • Applicants who have mixed roles, such as an office or payroll manager with HR responsibilities, may qualify with their experience, as long as their HR-related duties total at least 1,000 hours in a calendar year (i.e., recruiting, interviewing, onboarding, and benefits enrollment).
  • Supervising employees in and of itself is not considered qualifying as HR-related experience.
  • SHRM membership is not required to qualify for the exam.


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