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SHRM Foundation Introduces Getting Talent Back to Work Certificate

A man using a tablet in a warehouse.

​Today, the SHRM Foundation launches the Getting Talent Back to Work (GTBTW) Certificate program, funded with generous support from the Lumina Foundation. The certificate, which focuses on hiring qualified individuals who have criminal and/or conviction records, is the first of its kind, said Wendi Safstrom, SHRM Foundation executive director.

The 10-hour e-learning program provides the education and resources needed to inform HR practices in the attracting, hiring and retaining of these individuals and equipping HR professionals with the skills they need to do so.

Through this multifaceted program, Safstrom said, "the SHRM Foundation and the HR community can influence large-scale systemic change for this critical population by spearheading workplace initiatives that offer second-chance populations a fair opportunity to gain employment."

Resources in the program help HR professionals, hiring managers and front-line supervisors recognize their own biases, take action, and capitalize on the value of employing individuals with criminal and/or conviction records.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) launched the GTBTW initiative in 2019 one month after the passage of the Fair Chance Act, which improves rehabilitation and re-entry opportunities for thousands of incarcerated men and women. Johnny C. Taylor, Jr., SHRM-SCP, SHRM president and chief executive officer, has called on employers to change their recruiting practices to include applicants with criminal backgrounds.  

SHRM research found that:

The Lumina Foundation, a private Indianapolis-based foundation, is providing financial support for this initiative, with curriculum created by the Center for Employment Opportunities. The Lumina Foundation has more than 30 years of experience working with re-entry employment.


Other SHRM resources:

Getting Talent Back to Work Digital Toolkit, SHRM Foundation

Workers with Criminal Records: Consumer and Employee Perspectives, SHRM research and surveys

4 Best Practices for Second-Chance Hiring, SHRM Online, February 2020

How Do Your Workers Feel About Colleagues with Violent Criminal Records?, SHRM Online, October 2020

Employing the Formerly Incarcerated: A Global Perspective, SHRM Online, August 2019

Hiring People with Criminal Backgrounds Is Easier Than You Think, SHRM Online, March 2019

SHRM Quiz: Hiring Individuals with Criminal Records


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