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What is Human Resources? Why is it so Sought After?

A Human Resource Manager (HRM) is just like Management Consultant; but the only difference is that an HRM is an internal management consultation regarding the people aspect of an organization. As an HRM, one manages the human resource of an organization, creasing out any rough edges that might arise inside the workplace. An HRM is the one who maintains the in-house peace, so as to bring out the best in their employees. The environment of one’s workplace can affect the overall business turnout, the progress, productivity, and even business longevity. Therefore, a tactful Human Resource unit in an organization can make a lot of difference on the overall functionality of the organization.

While managing this Human Capital, a Human Resource Manager becomes an active internal leader and a professional confidant of the employees. Depending on what vertical one specializes in, for example, HR Consultant, HR Business Partner, Recruitment Head, or Development Program in-charge, one will pose as a Go-To Leader for your respective unit. The ‘Management’ here means that an HR Manager is effectively arranging and managing the employees associated with the organization. There is a lot of structuring fundamentals involved here since an HR Manager has to be dedicated towards the welfare of the employees and the core management of the company, both at the same time.

This career is much sought after because the Human Capital is undoubtedly the most essential assent to any organization, and the HRM is the one taking care of this capital.

Qualification Needed for a Career in Human Resources
What goes inside the interiors of an organization surely reflects on its exterior presentation. Therefore, an HR professional, being a key component for guarding and cultivating these interiors, needs to be backed up by a series of skilled knowledge about handling this significant duty. A prior academic timeline, in liaison with Labour Relations, General Administration, Corporate Psychology, Economics, Business studies, Communication and Language, or Accounting, will put you in a spot for commencing on this career. Further, a relevant work experience – be it in attaining a Master’s Degree or in ascending professionally- always puts a candidate in a good light. Likewise, a considerable amount of work experience and internships before pursuing a full-time career in HRM show one’s prior understanding of business settings, and some practical understanding of the Employee needs.

To further in this career, going for an academic background with a special focus on Human Resource Management is essential. Academic courses like an MBA or a similar Master’s degree in Business Management will leave one well-coached to step into the career like Human Resources. An MBA curriculum that concentrates upon organizational Behaviour, Business Ethics, Legalities, Labour Relations, and Corporate Management will advance a candidate’s understanding of the HR concepts firmly.
Skills Needed for a Career in Human Resources
Brilliant People Skills, strong Problem Solving skills, an inquisitive mind for reason, attention to details, fluency in language, easiness in working in collaborations, and expertise in strategic functionality are few of the most basic skills needed for a career in Human Resource management. Additionally, strong influencing skills, an incredible personality, confidence and courage to take righteous actions in the face of challenging situations are the hallmarks of successful HR personnel. Since these soft skills do not ensure one’s ability to handle the multitude of issues that fall under the jurisdiction of an HR Manager, skills gained through training and specialization are very necessary for advancement. Professionally or academically learned skills like information management, understanding the organizational structure and development in accordance to the ethical and cultural values, environment, making sure of the employee relations are healthy and maintained, and learning about talent management and development, benefits and rewards system – all are skills needed for a career Human Resource.

Hierarchy in Human Resources Career Path
The main responsibility of maintaining a fostering work culture largely depends on the Human Resource Department of a company. There are two broad sub-types in this department. First type is the Human Resource Specialists and the other is the Human Resource Generalists. As one can guess, HR Specialist have a well-defined HR role, usually inside the HR unit of a big firm, whereas an HR Generalist takes care of multitude of responsibilities, usually for small organizations with smaller HR Management needs. Therefore, while entering into a career in Human Resources, one needs to be sure of what kind of role you want to be playing.

The best way to know what specialization one fits in would be to work as a HR Generalist for a short period to get hands-on knowledge of the expansive area of the career possibilities in Human Resources. Making a shift, thereafter, will be smoother. These Generalist roles can also be taken up, while one is studying the core of Business discipline academically, in which the knowledge of Management, Recruitment, Labour and Training, and Compensation is well provided. An MBA, holistically, provides for all of these academic expertise needed for a career in Human Resources.

After securing an MBA or a related degree in Business operations, or a specialization of Human Resources along with a Master’s Degree, one can start career in HR as a Human Resources Manager or an Assistant HR Manager in Labour Relations Management, Training and Development Management, Training and Recruitment Management, Employee Benefit management, Information System Management, or Employee Health and Safety Management. After working within a speciality of a big unit for a few years, one is expected to rise to the position of an Officer or Coordinator or Manager of their speciality. All the HR positions vary from one organization to the other. Nonetheless, in such roles, one would be solely managing one HR unit.

There are different types of HR requirements in different companies, and thus, it is not feasible to mention all the in-between positions in the hierarchy, towards becoming the final- HR Director. An HR Director is in control of the entire department under him, looking through the HR training strategy, controlling the departmental budget and expenditure, and managing the duties and execution of the HR personnel under his administration.

Pros of a Career in Human Resources
Each decision one takes as an HR professional counts in the overall reflection of the organizations’ everyday work culture. Therefore, the opportunities to make a difference in the workplace are many, if you are the one on a lookout. This career is also a good platform for the people who care about the Labour Welfare relations and want to take a step in improving the in-house work culture of an organization.

With a career in Human Resources, one generally does not have an overly-hectic work schedule. There might be waves of long working hours, but it is not an overly- exhausting career. As an HR person, you will connect with all the employees in the office, thus having plenty of opportunities to build your professional network.

In the present day scenario, HR plays a very crucial role in characterizing an organization as employee-friendly or the other way round. HR ensures that the talent of the company is well appreciated and that the work-life balance is well maintained and the overall employment structure favours the employees.

Cons of a Career in Human Resources
HR does not have a steep career hierarchy, which may make it difficult for many to see a progressive career path. Further, HR Managers rarely go on to lead companies; you won’t find many CEOs with an HR background. However, with right career moves, one can move from HR to the top management of the company in due course of time.

Who is a Career in Human Resources good for?
Many roles ask for candidates who are ‘good with people’, but there is no function where this is more important than in the HR. One needs to genuinely care about the well-being and development of employees, which often results in close working relationships with people from across the business. The IT team, Sales division and the Finance department may keep to themselves, but as an HR professional, one has to make them function as a cohesive unit.

Best Companies for a Career in Human Resources

  • Cadbury
  • IBM
  • Ford
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • British Telecom
  • Unilever
  • Diageo
  • Sainsbury’s
  • Nissan
  • Shell