It is not a straight path on your journey to being an HR manager. You can take some specific action steps to becoming a human resource manager and the first step is education. The second step is networking your way into an entry-level job.
What type of education is required for HR?
Gaining an education is one of the first steps to becoming a human resource manager. The education requirements for human resources managers will probably require a degree. There are also opportunities to work in HR even before you graduate. Gaining working experience in the field of HR is another of the many steps to becoming a human resource manager.
You can get a lot of education from resources other than college courses. For example, look into certification programs. Working in an entry-level HR job is an education all its own. The best way to learn if you enjoy working in HR is to get in and try it.
If you can land an internship in the HR department you will get hands-on experience working with HR professionals. Working as an intern while in college is one of the strategic steps to becoming a human resource manager. This opportunity will provide invaluable experience for your career decisions.
How do I get started in HR?
Getting an entry-level job is one of the steps to becoming a human resource manager. Two of the common entry-level roles are the HR Specialist and the HR Generalist.
What is an HR Generalist?
Being an HR generalist in a strong human resources department is a great way to learn about the HR field. The HR Generalist role is usually administrative in nature.
Finding a job as an HR generalist is just one of the steps to becoming a human resource manager. This role often focuses on helping with the compliance responsibilities of HR to help make sure the company has good records.
What is an HR Specialist?
An HR specialist may work at a similar level as the HR generalist, but they usually have a more narrowly defined set of responsibilities. For example, the HR specialist may only work on the company’s benefit plans helping to educate employees, get them signed up, and then navigate working with the company’s benefits providers.
If you are already working in a great company you don’t want to change jobs. You may want to move to the HR department or move up in the HR department. Getting your degree in Human Resource Management is another great step toward becoming a human resource manager. Some companies will help you cover the cost of college while you are working to gain the education and the experience all at the same time.
What do I need to do to become a human resources manager?
HR is a big field. HR managers deal with everything from benefits and pay structures to compliance with employment law and hiring practices. Gaining experience in an HR department is one of the important steps to becoming a human resource manager.
You will have to show your supervisor you are a great people person. HR is all about people. You must be able to learn and keep up with changing rules and communicate these changes to other managers and employees.
How long does it take to become a manager in HR?
The journey to becoming a manager in a company is different for each person. In a smaller company, you can progress very quickly for some roles. At the same time, there may be fewer openings to move up.
In a larger company, the role of the HR Manager is more complex. You will need to gain more experience working in the human resources field to be qualified for the manager job. It will take three to five years for most companies to move up to the manager role.
The fastest way to become an HR Manager is to learn the field of HR while also building your leadership and management skills. There is a lot to learn for an HR professional. The HR Manager needs to understand the rules and laws and continue to be educated on the application of these changing laws for the industry of the company.
The HR Manager also needs to be a strong leader in the company. They need to lead all the other managers both by example and by helping provide them training to keep the company compliant with applicable laws.
An employee with a strong education in human resources paired with good communication skills is a great candidate to be the next HR manager. Proving your leadership abilities shows you are ready to move up the role of HR manager for your company. Building your people skills is one of the steps to becoming a human resource manager.
Is HR a stressful job?
Working in HR can be stressful. One of your functions is to deal with discipline and termination of employees. As the manager of a human resources department, you are responsible for the hiring and firing decisions the company makes. You will also train managers to make fair decisions while supervising employees.
Learning to fill open positions in a company with great people is fun and exciting in challenging hiring environments when it’s hard to find the great talent it can be stressful for the HR leader. Your managers are counting on you to help them fill the roles of their team.
The managers and owners of the company rely on the HR Manager to be current on the rules and regulations for your industry. The HR Manager needs to keep the company safe, and compliant and help build a great culture to retain and reward employees.
Are HR Managers paid well?
Working as an HR manager is a good-paying job. HR Managers in the US in 2022 are making an average wage of $70,181. How well you are paid depends on the size of the company. In larger companies, a human resource manager salary will be well over $100k annually. Your wage will grow as you build experience in the field of HR.
Managers with graduate degrees will demand an even higher salary for their roles. Having an advanced degree will also put you in line to move up to the role of HR Director.
While there are many steps to becoming a human resource manager to master so you can achieve your goal. The most important first step to becoming a human resource manager is getting educated. Not just education from a college degree but education for the role of managing people and the technical rules you will be responsible to understand.
Being an HR Manager is a rewarding job. While it can be stressful at times it pays well and the manager role may lead you to become the director of human resources. Being promoted may just be one of the steps to becoming a human resource manager that leads to a successful career in human resources.