Traditionally human resources has been an administrative department for business. Lately, it has become a strategic function that aids in the growth of the business. The increasing focus of organizations on talent retention and engagement requires companies to hire HR managers who can take strategic steps to hire and retain employees.
What does an HR manager do?
An HR manager plays a key role in the business growth strategy by overseeing and ensuring the smooth running of the HR function. At larger organizations, an HR manager is responsible for labor relations, employee benefits and compensation, learning and development, and more. At a smaller organization, an HR manager could be directing recruitment and managing other administrative functions.
The outlook for human resource jobs is promising. According to the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics), the number of human resource jobs is expected to increase at 7% annually between 2018 and 2028.
How can you become a human resource manager?
Step1. Get a degree and meet education qualifications
A bachelor’s degree in human resource management is the most preferred qualification for HR managers. Employers are also open to graduates from other disciplines as long as the candidate possesses strong skills. Several universities, colleges, and online universities offer a bachelor’s program in human resources. Additional, business or management courses can also boost chances to get into human resources.
Additionally, students from other backgrounds can also take HR certification to enter the human resource.
Step 2. Take an HR internship
Many employers offer internship programs for students and college graduates. These internships entail managing administrative tasks, facilitating employee on-boarding process, assisting in recruitment, and more. You need good interpersonal and communication skills to grab these internships.
Step 3. Get an entry-level job in human resources
Getting the first entry-level job is often challenging. Corporate recruiters visit college campuses, where academic performance coupled with professional experience is a major selection criterion. So ensure that your resume reflects both. You can gain professional experience from internships, volunteer work, and collaborative work.
Step 4. Get an advanced degree
A master’s degree in human resources is often required by employers to hire for senior roles in HR management. So after working for a few years, I aim to get a master’s degree. This will accelerate the growth of your HR career and push you to senior roles. Taking an advanced degree will equip you with leadership skills, policymaking, and implementation skills, maintain employee relations, and other skills.
Step 5. Get an HR certification
Getting industry recognition increases values for HR professionals. Certification bodies such as HRCI, SHRMI, and TMI offer the world’s leading certification for HR professionals. These certifications validate that you possess the necessary skills required to perform your job effectively as an HR professional.
Many employers prefer to hire certified HR professionals. Plus, the average salary of certified professionals is more than non-certified professionals. Overall, earning certification will give you an edge over other professionals and make you stand out.
Learning and development manager, compensation & benefits manager, and Payroll managers are other roles in human resources that are equally valuable in the industry. The career path for all roles is similar except the responsibilities. Learning and development managers build and implement training delivery programs, compensation & benefits managers create and manage compensation programs, and Payroll managers oversee disbursement programs.
The scope of each role is similar to the HR manager. Before you embark on a career in HR, learning about these roles will give you a better understanding of the HR department and where your skills will fit better. Choose a role that fits your aspirations and skills best.