Generalist to Specialist - Routes


Hope everyone is doing well and hasn't melted in this heat!

As the title suggests I've started looking into the transition from a generalist HR role into a specalist HR role. For a little bit of background I have been working in HR for a couple of years, starting as an HR Assistant and most recently working as an HR Services Adviser. I'm very interested in specialising in Employee Engagement/Wellbeing once I have a couple more years of Generalist experience under my belt.

I was wondering/hoping that those who have made the transition to a specalist role could share their story/route. For example, did you do any additional qualifications (I've seen a Level 3 Health and Wellbeing course but unsure if would be recognised/seen as worth doing), how did you find the transition from a generalist role to a specalist role, did you move into a specalist role within your current company or did you need to look elsewhere etc.

Any guidance would be really appreciated. 

Thank you 

  • Good luck I think true engagement roles are the most important roles in HR so it’s a great field to get into.

    My views are as a HRD recruiting into these roles rather than as someone in one. ( and we have recruited three this year).

    The qualification won’t harm any prospects and will widen your knowledge but I doubt will be a deal maker or breaker. Especially at L3. But while gaining general HR experience won’t harm.

    Most of the great engagement people I have recruited have moved into roles after being HRBPs. The generalist experience is really useful.

    Alternatively it is possible to start in a more junior role but mostly people transfer internally rather than get such a role externally ( as you will be up against people with engagement experience.

    Good luck.
  • In reply to Keith:

    Good advice from Keith
    IMHO it's preferable to get several years of generalist BP experience under your belt. That will allow you to draw from a range of situations and experiences in order to select appropriate solutions - and more importantly why the solution is a good fit. Without this broader experience you can probably only draw from a narrower range of experiences/solutions and perpetuate the existing situation. During this period, ensure that you develop not only your technical HR skills but also a sound understanding of the company's business model, how it is appropriate to the context in which it operates and competes, and the levers that HR can pull on to positively contribute.
    Good luck!

  • Thank you both so much for your replies, really do appreciate it and you've both been really helpful.
  • Steve Bridger

    | 0 Posts

    Community Manager

    27 Jul, 2021 11:29

    In reply to Laura:

    ...and welcome to the Community, Laura.