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The ABP recently launched its Business Psychology Certification. Here Alex Forsythe and Steve Apps discuss what the ABP certified practitioner does which differentiates them from other practitioners.

What is Business Pyschology?

Business psychology is an applied science that investigates how to make people and organisations more effective.  It uses social scientific research methods to study people, workplaces and organisations to better align their multiple, and sometimes competing needs. Business psychologists job titles and employment environments are varied.  They may work as employment consultants in private firms, testing and assessment, human factors consultants, academics and researchers in universities, counsellors, coaches, marketing and communications.

What is a Business Psychologist?

What sets Business Psychologists apart from other disciplines is their business acumen; the knowledge, skills and experience the business situation, its market orientation, strategic perspective and financial standing.  This business acumen, combined with the diversity of specialisms that practitioners operate in, gives the field a particular industry-facing advantage. Business Psychology has a reciprocal relationship with business, drawing insights from those with experience of what works at work to enable psychological research to be applied pragmatically in ways that are appropriate to the situation.  It also allows cross-fertilisation of expertise: from business into psychology, and of academic knowledge and rigour from psychology into business.

This reciprocal relationship and the variety of backgrounds of Business Psychology practitioners has historically been both a strength and a perennial problem for the discipline.  Our practitioners may not have the traditional qualifications and certifications acquired through alternative routes such as the British Psychological Society route to Chartership in Occupational Psychology.  They may, none the less, be exceptional in their capacity to provide unbiased, scientifically credible knowledge and interventions which support healthy, productive and mutually beneficial relationships between people and organisations.  As such, The Association of Business Psychology welcomes all who actively embrace psychology through their practice.

What makes an ABP Certified Business Pschologist?

However, to further differentiate professional Business Psychologists and to offer an additional level of security to the public, the Association of Business Psychology has recently developed a new route to professional certification.  We believe that this route will provide increased protection to the public because in order to become a certified Business Psychologist with the Association of Business Psychology, practitioners will now need to move through a process of peer-review.  This process is modelled on evaluations for excellence used by many of the UK’s leading universities.  It provides an opportunity for the applicant to review and reflect on their professional practice to date and to receive bespoke professional advice from leading psychologists in the field of business.   At its heart, our certification process is developmental, providing the applicant with the opportunity to review their career development, how they apply psychological theory and methods to their practice, and to have this work evaluated.  The outcome of this process is a panel decision regarding the standing of the applicant within the discipline of Business Psychology and the subsequent award of Associate, Senior of Fellow of The Association of Business Psychology.

You can find more information and how to apply here.

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