Tips for Launching Your Career in Human Resources
Most businesses need a human resources department as they focus on an organization’s most valuable asset: their employees. As a human resources specialist, you will work with employees on such issues as training, benefits, and company policies. In some cases, you may be the person that employees come to when they are having problems at work. This is a great career choice for someone who is interested in the business world but likes people more than data.
Being an HR Specialist
This is an office job that generally has reliable daytime hours. It is a good choice for anyone who wants to work in a business setting but does not want a huge amount of responsibility outside of regular work hours. Another advantage of this position is that you can work in almost any industry. This means that if there is an industry that particularly interests you, you can work on tailoring your experience and resume for it. If you would like to work for an airline for the travel perks but you don’t want a job that involves working with the general public as a flight attendant or customer service representative, HR might be the place for you.
Getting Your Education
At most companies, a bachelor’s degree is either required or highly desired. Some schools may offer a human resources degree although a major in a related field, such as communications or business, can also be relevant. You can look to options for paying for tuition, fees, books and general living expenses. In addition to scholarships and grants, loans are also a possibility. Finding out online whether you are eligible for loans can be a fast and easy process. While you don’t need any special licensing to be a human resources professional, once you have completed your bachelor’s, you may want to seek a certificate, such as the Certified Professional qualification from the Society for Human Resource Management.
There are a few solutions to the paradox of needing experience to get a job in the first place. One option is to get an internship. These are excellent but competitive opportunities, and if you don’t manage to get one, there are alternatives. You could simply look for work part-time in a human resources department while you are still in school. You could also volunteer with an organization where you could take a position that involved working in an HR-type capacity.
Many of the necessary skills for this job are not technical skills but are what are often referred to as soft skills. As an HR specialist, you will need to be organized and discreet and have good communication and problem-solving skills. You must strike a balance between helping employees when they have issues and protecting the interests of the organization that you work for. This will require you to have strong interpersonal skills. Since you will need to track such things as benefits, time off and training, you must also be detail-oriented. You may be called in to help resolve disputes. Being a people person will be one of your biggest assets in this position.