Overview

Knowledge and experience of Human Resources will mean you are never short of job opportunities. Although the trends in titles are changing (as businesses become more focused on the value of employees and moves away from referring to them as a human resource) the HR Department is still the mainstay of almost all medium to large business models and a qualified HR practitioner can be a very sought after commodity. If you enjoy helping others and working towards true equality and diversity, then this could be the career for you!

Human Resource professionals are responsible for the hiring, firing, personal welfare and professional progress of employees throughout the organization. They are the front line of recruitment and will ensure that employees are engaged, valued, trained and given sufficient opportunities for personal development. An important part of the role is to devise and implement policies that will affect the working conditions of staff throughout the business, at all levels. Policies that range from annual leave entitlements and maternity/paternity rights through to competency and disciplinary procedures are all within the realm of Human Resources.

Your resume needs to demonstrate excellent interpersonal skills, genuine values, warmth, humanity and outstanding communication. Check the requirements of this role carefully before you apply; a HR Officer may be employed on the merit of experience and knowledge but for HR Managers there are some specific requirements in terms of qualifications,  too.

Pay

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the 2015 median pay for a human resources specialist was around $58,350 per year. At the low end of the spectrum, subspecialists make around $35,000 per year, and at the high end of the spectrum more senior specialist can earn up words towards $70,000 per year.

Human resources specialist compensation is unique in that it is not only limited to annual salaries but can also include commission type compensation. In addition to salary and/or commission there are also bonuses paid and sometimes profit-sharing, while some companies mix-and-match different types of compensation.

Human Resources (HR) Salary Statistics

2016 Median Pay$58,350 per year
$28.06 per hour
Typical Entry-level EducationBachelor's degree
Work Experience in a Related OccupationNone
On-the-job TrainingNone
Number of Jobs, 2016482,000
Job Outlook, 2014-2024+5%
Employment Change, 2014-2024+22,000
Sources: U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics & Payscale.com

Industry Forecast

Industry growth rates for human resources specialist overall are pretty positive at around 9% annually. Compared to other specialty managers at around 7%, and the total among all occupations also at 7%, the 9% figure can safely be considered a healthy, robust growth rate.

Although strong growth rates are present, candidates should expect strong competition for the best-paying positions. Human resources is one profession where having a certification or master’s degree, particularly with a concentration in human resources management, can greatly increase job prospects.

Given current trends in terms of the United States government’s tax provision for corporations, one could perhaps assume that demand for human resources in the corporate world between 20 17 and 2020 could exceed the 9% annual growth figure.

Essentially, if companies have more cash, they are probably going to hire, and when they hire, they need a human resources specialist.

Types of Human Resources Officers

Many professionals enter the human resources industry as a human resource generalist, human resource specialist, or human resource officers. These are kind of the “jack of all trades” of human resources, and are involved in everything from resume screening to interview scheduling.

Obviously, the general career trajectory for entry-level human resources officers usually progresses into something like a human resources director, human resources manager, senior human resources manager, or even something like the vice president of human resources. There are many different levels of human resources professionals, simply because companies are so large and recruitment exists on all levels for entry-level candidates to executive searches.

There is a direct correspondence between pay and experience in the human resource industry. Entry-level candidates, meaning those with under five years of experience, usually start at around $43,000 per year. Those with experience between five and 10 years usually earn a little bit higher, between $45,000 and $50,000 per year. Finally, those senior level professionals with more than 20 years of experience, on average, usually earned more than $55,000 per year.

So with all that said, experience literally pays in the human resources industry. Part of this,  as mentioned earlier, is that companies have to hire everyone from janitors to CEOs, and this means there is always a lot of hiring going on and at different levels of importance. It makes sense that a human resources specialist who works hard can work his or her way up within a company and can achieve very senior management positions.

Resume Example Download

So if you are reviewing thousands if not hundreds of thousands of resumes, or if you work for a Fortune 500 company, maybe millions of resumes, but when it comes to writing your own, perhaps you do not know where to start. It is okay, it happens all of us. Feel free to use the professional sample below.  You can download it and modify it to make it your own because resume customization is critical, But hey, you do not need us tell you that.

View Large Version

How To Write Your Own

Writing your own human resources resume can be a bit like the movie “Inception”. You have seen so many resumes, and you know what to look for in a resume, but when it actually comes to writing your own, you can not tell the difference between what you have read and what is reality.

Do not worry though, all we need to do is take a step back, take a deep breath, and remember all the skills of human resources professionals that we have exercised over the years, and then take those skills, wrap them up and put them into our own resume.

Just because you are a human resource professional, does not mean your resume will receive extra scrutiny. Of course, the reader will expect it to be professionally written, and in adherence to generally accepted resume standards in terms of fonts and margins, etc, but at the end of the day your resume is just like everyone else’s; it is your autobiography of your professional career, nothing more and nothing less.

You want to choose a resume format that best reflects your experience level. Entry-level candidate should use reverse chronological formats, and more senior level candidates will use functional formats that more prominently display the skills  they have worked hard to achieve over the years.

Also, do not get too caught up in all the things that you look for when you are judging resumes. Just be sure you cover the basics:  your experiences that are most pertinent to the position you are applying for.

Sprinkle in all of those other juicy bits that you love to seeing on a good resume, such as numerical quantification and percentage in dollar terms whenever possible. Even things like company awards,  satisfaction ratings, and other industry ratings or awards should be included as this is a type of industry where peer-review within a company holds high value.

That is pretty much it; you really know how to write resume because, well, it so closely corresponds to your job. Still, it helps to take a deep breath and focus on the basics. Looking at resumes all day for living can kind of create a sort of professional snow blindness. To be sure you are  not missing anything, humble yourself and give your resume to a friend, or ask another colleague within  the human resources industry for their opinion.

Just because you are an expert about resumes, does not mean it will not help to have another set of eyes review your work.

Sample Bullet Points

You have seen so many bullet points in your career you do not even know where to start at this point. Do not worry; we have you covered. Below is a set of specially selected, professionally written, human resources-applicable bullet points that you can use for inspiration on your resume.

Sample HR Bullet Points

Task
Serve as a link between management and employees by handling questions, interpreting and administering contracts and helping resolve work-related problems.
Analyze and modify compensation and benefits policies to establish competitive programs and ensure compliance with legal requirements.
Advise managers on organizational policy matters such as equal employment opportunity and sexual harassment, and recommend needed changes.
Perform difficult staffing duties, including dealing with understaffing, refereeing disputes, firing employees, and administering disciplinary procedures.
Plan and conduct new employee orientation to foster positive attitude toward organizational objectives.
Identify staff vacancies and recruit, interview and select applicants.
Plan, direct, supervise, and coordinate work activities of subordinates and staff relating to employment, compensation, labor relations, and employee relations.
Plan, organize, direct, control or coordinate the personnel, training, or labor relations activities of an organization.
Represent organization at personnel-related hearings and investigations.
Administer compensation, benefits and performance management systems, and safety and recreation programs.
Provide current and prospective employees with information about policies, job duties, working conditions, wages, opportunities for promotion and employee benefits.
Analyze statistical data and reports to identify and determine causes of personnel problems and develop recommendations for improvement of organization's personnel policies and practices.
Prepare and follow budgets for personnel operations.
Maintain records and compile statistical reports concerning personnel-related data such as hires, transfers, performance appraisals, and absenteeism rates.
Analyze training needs to design employee development, language training and health and safety programs.
Conduct exit interviews to identify reasons for employee termination.
Oversee the evaluation, classification and rating of occupations and job positions.
Prepare personnel forecast to project employment needs.
Study legislation, arbitration decisions, and collective bargaining contracts to assess industry trends.
Allocate human resources, ensuring appropriate matches between personnel.
Develop or administer special projects in areas such as pay equity, savings bond programs, day-care, and employee awards.
Negotiate bargaining agreements and help interpret labor contracts.
Investigate and report on industrial accidents for insurance carriers.
Develop, administer and evaluate applicant tests.
Provide terminated employees with outplacement or relocation assistance.
Contract with vendors to provide employee services, such as food service, transportation, or relocation service.

Career Objective’s & Professional Profiles

Having sat down and had to read hundreds of resumes for a single position, you know that the opening of the resume is the most important part when it comes to getting the attention of the reader and standing out from the rest of the pack.

In terms of quality career objectives, there are a few things that you want emphasize, including your years of experience if they are over five, and any human resources specific certifications you have that make you appear to be the ultimate HR professional.

These include things like a certification and professional human resources (PHR) or, if you are a more senior level candidates, a senior professional and human resources certification (SPHR).  Certifications like these are highly prized within the HR industry and can be obtained online within months. Obtaining any sort of certification may seem like a hassle, but when it comes to negotiating a higher salary, industry relevant accreditation is always useful.

Additional Skills & Certifications

Below are some supplementary descriptors and skill-sets that you can use for inspiration or copy for your own resume to make sure that it covers some of the bases most commonly sought after when seeking to fill an HR related position in a company. Whether it is a small startup or a Fortune 500 firm, the ability to identify and snatch talent are applied across the board, so it is important to make sure you include these in your resume to remain competitive.

Useful Skills to Include

Useful Human Resources Skills

SkillSkill Description
Active ListeningGiving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
SpeakingTalking to others to convey information effectively.
Social PerceptivenessBeing aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
Management of Personnel ResourcesMotivating, developing, and directing people as they work, identifying the best people for the job.
Reading ComprehensionUnderstanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
Critical ThinkingUsing logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
CoordinationAdjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
NegotiationBringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.
Judgment and Decision MakingConsidering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
MonitoringMonitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
PersuasionPersuading others to change their minds or behavior.
Complex Problem SolvingIdentifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
Systems AnalysisDetermining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
Systems EvaluationIdentifying measures or indicators of system performance and the actions needed to improve or correct performance, relative to the goals of the system.
Time ManagementManaging one's own time and the time of others.
WritingCommunicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Active LearningUnderstanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
InstructingTeaching others how to do something.
Service OrientationActively looking for ways to help people.
Learning StrategiesSelecting and using training/instructional methods and procedures appropriate for the situation when learning or teaching new things.
MathematicsUsing mathematics to solve problems.
Management of Financial ResourcesDetermining how money will be spent to get the work done, and accounting for these expenditures.
Operations AnalysisAnalyzing needs and product requirements to create a design.
Management of Material ResourcesObtaining and seeing to the appropriate use of equipment, facilities, and materials needed to do certain work.
ProgrammingWriting computer programs for various purposes.
ScienceUsing scientific rules and methods to solve problems.
Technology DesignGenerating or adapting equipment and technology to serve user needs.
Operation MonitoringWatching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Quality Control AnalysisConducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Operation and ControlControlling operations of equipment or systems.
Equipment SelectionDetermining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
InstallationInstalling equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Equipment MaintenancePerforming routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
TroubleshootingDetermining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
RepairingRepairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Additional Resources