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HR Certificate (Tier 1) Program


The purpose of the HR Certificate Program is to provide comprehensive, practical and DC government specific overview of Human Resources. Each class will focus on a key HR subject and will highlight real-world issues that confront contemporary HR practitioners and managers. With the knowledge gained, HR professionals will be equipped with industry best practices in order to provide first-class HR services to the District workforce.

The framework of the program consists of three tiers. Tier 1 courses cover the conceptional, technical, and procedural knowledge needed by a successful HR practitioner.  During Tier 1, HR professionals will gain a deeper understanding of HR Fundamentals.

Program Design and Assessment:

The program will consist of a cohort of approximately 20 HR practitioners who will meet in-person monthly for 1.5 to 2 business days for six months. Courses will be held on the Tuesday & Wednesday of the fourth week of each month. (Qualification Analysis will be held from Tuesday to Thursday.) Each course will have a pre-assessment to test the base level knowledge and a post-assessment to quickly assess knowledge gained through the training. Each participant will complete a Capstone presentation on knowledge gained through the program and application of information learned into daily work.


Interested participants must meet the below eligibility requirements:

  • 1 years in HR role or hold a HR-related degree (Bachelor or Master)
  • Have completed the one-year probation period in DC Government


Interested participants must complete the following:

  • Submit online application including answers 3 essay questions
  • Agency Recommendation

DCHR will select participants based on the above criteria.

Application Process/ Timeline:

Date Stage
Nov 21, 2019 HRA Announcement @ HRA Meeting
Dec 4, 2019 WebEx info session held
Dec 2, 2019 – Jan 10, 2020 Submit online application
Jan 13-17, 2020 Screen qualified candidates and make final selections
Jan 20-21, 2020 DCHR notifies selected applicants
Jan 28-29, 2020 First cohort session held

Tier 1 Courses: Tentative schedule

Course Name Duration Remarks
Learn how HR policies are made and implemented in District government. Understand how different policies affect District employees and managers. Practice navigating the District Personnel Manual to find answers to employees’ questions.
2 hours    In-Person
Compensation and FLSA
Introduce you to the fundamental elements of compensation and the administration of the District Government compensation programs, as well as the information and understanding of FLSA.
1.5 days In-Person
Benefits, Retirement, and Medicare
Cover all the fringe benefits offered by the District to eligible employees while active and retired, and how employees can maximize savings by combining benefits. This course will also outline how the District’s benefits can coordinate with Medicare for optimum coverage during retirement.
1 day In-Person
Leave Management, ADA, & Suitability
Gain an understanding of the District’s family leave and disability related benefits. Learn how suitability screenings keep the District’s workforce safe and secure. Know the critical roles HR professionals play in ensuring proper suitability.
1 day In-Person
Briefing/Interviewing Techniques
Provide you with the knowledge and skills you will need to conduct an effective, structured interview through a behavior-based approach that identifies the best qualified candidate for your agency. You will also learn and practice essential strategies for delivering short structured briefings.
2 days In-Person
Performance Management and Employee Discussion
Become equipped with the skills you need to make meaningful performance distinctions. Implement communication, planning, tracking, and other performance tools to make, or advise on making, performance decisions. Learn how to hold productive performance discussions with your employees.
1.5 days In-Person

Qualification Analysis
Evaluate applicants by applying eligibility and qualification requirements found in OPM's Qualification Standards, including basic eligibility, minimum qualification requirements, specialized experience requirements, positive education requirements, and the substitution of education for experience.

3 days In-Person
Introduction to Classification
Learn the basic, crosscutting principles you need to classify and analyze District Service (DS) positions and Wage System position.  Improve your analytical skills in order to ask good questions about position duties and organizational design, write Factor Evaluation System (FES) position descriptions, and analyze position management alternatives. 
2 days In-Person
Strategic Human Capital Management
Gain a solid foundation in strategic human capital management concepts, principles, and best practices. Learn the skills needed to align HR goals, performance, and budget with agency mission and use metrics to identify needs and outcomes and measure progress toward identified outcomes.
1 day In-Person

WebEx Meeting Information

Wednesday, Dec 4, 2019
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM (UTC-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada)

Meeting link: https://dcnet.webex.com/dcnet/j.php?MTID=me74b89c4232069769b1abde42546d986
Meeting number: 735 759 145
Password: qCJ3hcMc

More ways to join
Join by video system
Dial [email protected]
You can also dial and enter your meeting number.
Join by phone: 1-650-479-3208 Call-in number (US/Canada)
Access code: 735 759 145