June 13, 2023 – Future of Work

SHRM Foundation Toolkit: A blueprint for advancing skills-based hiring


Almost every industry is having trouble filling job openings. To fill more positions while finding the right person for the job, employers can turn to skills-based hiring.

Helping employers understand skills-based hiring

According to SHRM, 72 percent of U.S. workers believe skilled credentials are an affordable way to gain the skills or experience necessary to find a new job. 

But SHRM also has found employers need more resources to understand how skilled credentials work and can facilitate career growth. 

To respond to this gap, SHRM Foundation launched its Skilled Credentials at Work campaign, which engages employers to expand hiring and retention practices to encompass individuals pursuing credentials and certifications instead of 2- or 4-year degrees. 

SHRM recently expanded that effort.

SHRM Foundation adds toolkit for skills-based hiring

In early June 2023, SHRM Foundation debuted a toolkit for HR leaders, hiring managers, and executives who want to implement skills-based hiring or retention efforts. Ready for Success: Adopting a Skills Mindset in Employment Practices provides tools and training to help employers adopt a skills-based lens, which can help ease talent recruitment and retention challenges that many companies currently face.

“Businesses looking to succeed going forward must continue to evolve their hiring practices,” said Wendi Safstrom, president of the SHRM Foundation. “The U.S. has entered a skills-based economy. And to fit this new environment, employers will need to adopt skills-based hiring practices in their HR departments.”

Ready for Success provides 12 actions workplaces can take to improve hiring practices and make in-roads to better match candidates to jobs that fit their unique skills and potential, including:

  • Adopting and aligning technology to have eligible skilled credentials in their sourcing and pairing;
  • Widening channels used to source candidates;
  • Implementing a skills-first mindset in job descriptions and postings to communicate the skills needed to succeed in a position to; and
  • Transforming the hiring process, including educating hiring managers on skills-first lenses and implicit bias.

The Charles Koch Foundation supported development of the toolkit.  

“We’re thrilled about our partnership with SHRM Foundation and the opportunity to connect with employers to drive action around skills-based hiring,” said CKF Executive Director Ryan Stowers. “With the launch of the skilled credentials toolkit, we are making strides towards a modern workplace focused on the potential of every individual.”

Learn more here.