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Human Resources As A Career

Pursuing human resources as a career can open many doors and opportunities within the people management and leadership space, with no two days the same. Find out more about the HR profession and how to get into human resources as a career here, including how to become an HR Manager.

Why is Human resources a good career?

There are plenty of benefits to working in human resources as a career. Human resources (HR) is a dynamic field that offers numerous career opportunities to those interested in managing an organisation's most valuable resource - its people. Here are some reasons why a career in human resources could be right for you:

  1. In-demand profession: With organisations recognising the importance of employee engagement and well-being, the demand for HR professionals is on the rise. This means that there are ample job opportunities in the field, both in the public and private sectors.
  2. Diverse role: The role of an HR professional involves a variety of tasks such as recruitment, employee relations, training and development, compensation and benefits, and legal compliance. This diversity ensures that the job is never monotonous, and there is always an opportunity to learn something new.
  3. Opportunities for growth: HR is a field that offers excellent opportunities for career growth. Starting as an HR assistant or coordinator, one can move up the ladder to become an HR manager, HR director, or even a chief HR officer. Additionally, HR professionals can specialise in areas such as talent management, organisational development, and HR analytics.
  4. Making a difference: HR professionals play a crucial role in shaping an organisation's culture, values, and employee experience. By creating a positive work environment and ensuring employees are engaged, HR can contribute significantly to an organization's success.
  5. Competitive salary: HR professionals are in high demand, and many roles within the HR career come with a competitive salary and benefits package.

In conclusion, is Human Resources a good career? For you, it very well could be. HR is a rewarding and fulfilling career choice with numerous opportunities for growth and making a difference. With the right skills and experience, HR professionals can enjoy a successful and fulfilling career. If you’re looking at how to get into HR, why not take your first step on the HR career ladder?

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What is the average HR salary?

HR salaries in the UK can range from around £20,000 to over £100,000 per year in HR Director roles, depending on factors such as position, location, industry, experience and more. As of September 2021, the average HR salary in the UK is around £37,500.

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HR Roles Comparison

Which HR role is right for me?

Earning potential
Average Starting Salary
Qualifications Needed
Experience Needed
HR Assistant
CIPD Level 3
None (may vary with employer)
HR Manager
CIPD Level 5
5+ years in relevant HR roles
HR Consultant
CIPD Level 7
7+ years in relevant HR roles

What Human Resources jobs are there?

There are many options available to those looking into working in human resources as a career, with different roles suited to different human resources qualifications. Those seeking a career in human resources have plenty of room for progression – finding out how to get into HR is the first step

HR Assistant

A HR Assistant is a support role within the human resources department of an organisation. HR Assistants are often the first point of contact for employees seeking assistance with HR-related matters and as such, need to have strong communication and interpersonal skills. The role of HR Assistant is typically an entry-level position, with opportunities for career progression within the HR profession – those pursuing human resources as a career typically begin their journey along the HR career path in this sort of position. So, what does a HR Assistant do?

They assist with a variety of tasks such as recruitment, onboarding, training and development, employee relations, and payroll. The role can involve organising and scheduling interviews, updating and maintaining employee records, processing employment contracts, and providing general administrative support to the HR team.

The average base salary for HR Assistants in the UK is around £20,000 per year, with a range of approximately £16,000 to £26,000 per year. This is an entry-level role with room for salaries to increase with experience as you climb the HR career ladder.

As this is an entry-level job role, you generally do not need formal qualifications or prior experience. In order to learn and develop your HR skills, begin studying the CIPD Level 3 Certificate in People Practice and follow the CIPD pathway.

HR Manager

What is an HR Manager? A Human Resources Manager is a vital role in any organisation and a highly-desired role for those following the HR career path. They are responsible for providing leadership and direction to the HR team, as well as developing and implementing HR strategies that support the company's goals. In the UK, HR Managers typically hold professional HR manager qualifications such as a CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma or equivalent and will have considerable experience and HR Manager skills, such as managing people and related issues.

So, what does an HR Manager do? If you’re looking at how to become a Human Resource manager, there are some skills you should get under your belt first. The main duties of an HR Manager include ensuring compliance with employment law, developing policies and procedures within the company, recruiting staff, managing performance appraisals, facilitating training programmes, resolving employee grievances, overseeing payroll and benefits administration, conducting job analysis, designing compensation plans, monitoring overtime hours etc.

They may also be involved in activities such as research into recruitment trends, job market conditions, rewards structures etc., to ensure their organisation remains competitive in its sector. HR manager skills needed to complete these duties include attention to detail, leadership and a passion for people management.

The average base salary for HR Managers in the UK is around £45,000 per year, with a range of approximately £30,000 to £65,000 per year. Salaries can be higher in larger cities such as London and in industries such as finance or technology. HR Managers with more experience and advanced HR manager qualifications may be able to command higher salaries. The specific benefits and bonus packages offered by an organization can also affect the total compensation for HR Managers. Those interested in how to become an HR Manager generally climb the HR career ladder, starting with entry-level HR roles.

The most highly-desired HR Manager skills include:

  • Communication and people management skills
  • Organisational skills
  • Adaptability
  • Knowledge of employment law
  • Proficiency in problem solving
  • Analytical or critical thinking skills

Respected HR courses are designed to help learners develop these valuable HR Manager skills.

Those interested in how to become a human resource manager should prioritise completing advanced human resources qualifications (such as CIPD Level 5 and CIPD Level 7), as well as gaining valuable prior experience within entry-level and intermediate HR job roles.

HR Consultant

A HR Consultant – or HR Advisor - is a professional who provides expert advice and guidance to organisations on a range of human resources-related matters. They may work independently or as part of a consulting firm. The role of a HR Consultant requires strong analytical, communication, and problem-solving skills, as well as a deep understanding of HR best practices and employment law. This is an ideal position for those looking to pursue human resources as a career who do not want to work for just one organisation.

HR Consultants deal with HR strategy development, employee relations, talent management, organisational change, and compliance with employment law. HR Consultants typically work with a range of clients across different industries, and their role involves understanding the specific needs and challenges of each client and developing tailored solutions to address these. They may also provide training and coaching to managers and employees on HR-related topics.

The average base salary for HR Consultants in the UK is around £41,000 per year, with a range of approximately £24,000 to £66,000 per year. Salaries can be higher in larger cities such as London and in consulting firms that specialise in areas such as organisational change or HR strategy development. HR Consultants with more experience and advanced qualifications may be able to command higher salaries. The specific benefits and bonus packages offered by an organisation can also affect the total compensation for HR Consultants.

If you’re interested in how to become a HR Advisor or HR Consultant, you should have the skills and qualifications needed to confidently advise organisations on HR matters. This is something which generally comes with experience gained whilst working within the HR field. You should also have a relevant certification, so gaining CIPD certification will help you to stand out to consultancy firms, or to clients if you choose to practice as an independent HR consultant.

HR Director

A HR Director is a senior executive, responsible for developing and implementing HR strategies aligned with the organisation's goals and objectives, managing the employer-employee relationship, promoting a positive workplace culture, and ensuring compliance with employment laws and regulations. The HR Director must have a strong understanding of HR best practices, leadership, communication, and problem-solving skills – this is a top-level position for anyone pursuing human resources as a career.

The role of HR Director involves overseeing HR operations such as talent acquisition, compensation and benefits, performance management, and employee relations.

The salary for the role of HR Director in the UK varies depending on factors such as industry, company size, location, and level of experience. The average base salary for the role of HR Director in the UK is around £100,000 per year, with a range of approximately £70,000 to £150,000 per year, with those who have plenty of experience within their career in human resources earning within the top of this bracket. HR salaries can be higher in industries such as finance or technology and in larger cities such as London. The specific benefits and bonus packages offered by an organisation can also affect the total compensation for HR Directors.

As the role of HR Director is around the very top of the HR career ladder, many HR Directors have worked their way up to this particular job. This is a role in which respected qualifications (such as CIPD Level 7 Advanced Diploma in Strategic People Management) and years of experience in the field are generally preferred.

How to get into Human Resources

If you’re looking to pursue working in human resources as a career in some capacity, you’ll need to acquire the relevant qualifications and experience. At StaySharp, we offer courses with CIPD, the Chartered Institute of People and Development. CIPD are a leading authority within the world of HR and CIPD qualifications are highly respected within the industry.

To begin your journey into human resources as a career and find out how to get into HR, visit the CIPD courses page and take the first step along the HR career path.

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