Themes in Module 1 of the Level 5 CIPD Qualification

A summary of everything you need to know about the first module

By Les Jones

Les is Oakwood's Head of Associates and works in our Associate Team
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We thought it might be useful to highlight what we consider to be the top six commonly used themes from our programmes. These are, in main, drawn from CIPD research – but Oakwood has added its own interpretation.

The underpinning tenet of HR is that HR activities should support the business plan – in other words everything we do should be in (1) Alignment with business aims and objectives. 

(2) Integration means that HR activities should be in synch where appropriate with all other functional activities – ‘horizontal integration’ – and together, integrated activities should support the business plan – ‘vertical integration’.

The CIPD ‘Next Generation’ report is based on the hypothesis that HR professionals are great at ‘service-driven HR’ – meaning we understand the importance of customer service – and ‘process-driven HR’ – meaning that were good at managing processes. This is not enough to ensure the survival of the HR profession into the future, say the researchers from the CIPD. HR professionals need to adopt a forward-looking perspective – seeing beyond the day-to-day operational focus of operational management. 

Significantly, HR professionals need to be ready to challenge the accepted: to ‘see things in a different way’ as, only by doing so, will they be able to help (3) ‘Future-proof’ their organisations in a (4) VUCA (volatile – uncertain – complex – ambiguous) macro environment. This, the CIPD researchers say, is (5) Insight-driven HR.

Speaking the language of business – becoming instinctively (6) ‘business savvy’ is a must for HR professionals. This means coming out of the ‘HR Ivory Tower’ and being seen around the organisation: ‘walking the talk’. It means being prepared to ask questions – being ‘curious’ – speaking the language of business and truly understanding it. If HR professionals can do this, they will gain credibility with operational management and be able to develop positive collaboration.

Les Jones 
Director of Development