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Support for Service Members Seeking SHRM Certification

Eligibility and discounts for active-duty and reserve military members, veterans, and spouses

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​Leadership and teamwork are deep-seated values in military service that translate well into the world of work. Leadership & Navigation is the very first competency in the SHRM Body of Applied Skills and Knowledge™ (SHRM BASK™), the basis for SHRM certification. Teamwork is an essential element of Relationship Management, another of the nine behavioral competencies described in that foundational document.

Your military service may make you eligible for SHRM certification. And if you are eligible, you can take advantage of reduced rates on exam fees and exam preparation. Active-duty and reserve members of the military, veterans, and military spouses interested in earning a SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP credential should contact for detailed information.

Military Eligibility

First, you need to find out if you are eligible to take the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP exam. Factors that will be considered when you apply to become a candidate for SHRM certification include your educational background, military career field and occupational specialty, and length of service.

If you have served or are serving in the fields of HR, personnel management, recruiting or career counseling, you can count your time in these areas as HR-related experience.

If you have served or are serving in a leadership role performing HR-related duties in any of the 14 functional knowledge areas described in the SHRM BASK, you may also count this experience toward your eligibility. Time in uniform builds expertise in many of these areas, including Analytical Aptitude, Managing a Global Workforce, Learning & Development, and Risk Management.

Military Discounts

SHRM offers a discount on the SHRM certification exam for active-duty and reserve members of the military, veterans, and military spouses. The reduced fee is $270, and you don't have to be a SHRM member to access that price. (That's less than the standard rate of $335 for SHRM members and $435 for nonmembers.)

Exam preparation with the SHRM Learning System also comes with a military discount. This interactive guide through the SHRM BASK includes study tools, practice questions, flashcards and a practice exam. If you choose to use the self-study format of the Learning System, you'll benefit from reduced rates on either the online-only program or the online-plus-print option, for individual or bulk orders. For details, visit the SHRM Learning System Military Student Promotion page. 

Military Funding Opportunities

The SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP credentials are recognized by the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs as valid elements of career development for military service members, part of the Credentialing Opportunities Online (COOL) initiatives that began in 2002.

COOL funding may be available to cover the costs of the exams, preparation and recertification, so visit each branch's COOL site to find out what financial assistance you may qualify for.

The Post-9/11 GI Bill can also be used to pay for your SHRM certification expenses.

SHRM certification's ever-increasing role in service members' professional development supports both the relevance of HR and related competencies within military circles and the military mantra of "Mission First—People Always."

Dorian Rollins is SHRM's senior specialist for certification relations.


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