Is a Human Resources Management Degree Right for You?

Human resources professionals are often responsible for matters involving the personnel of their companies. When most people think of human resources, they picture the hiring and firing process. But as companies have expanded and become more complex, the duties of human resources workers have expanded.

In addition to recruiting employees and terminating inadequate workers, they have become more involved in the general strategic planning of day-to-day operations. The human resources degree focuses on areas such as labor law, labor relations, information systems, strategic staffing, training and development, and communication. Students also learn about pay systems and benefit plans. If you’re good at problem-solving and working with people, human resources management could be a good fit for you.

Advice for Earning Your Human Resources Management Degree Online

A human resource management bachelor’s degree can easily be completed online. However, an online degree does not provide with the practical application and interaction opportunities that you need to truly develop into a human resources professional. Seek out online programs that offer internship coordination services, so that you can apply what you have learned in a real-world setting before entering the job hunt.

Also look for programs that offer a variety of courses to help you develop a broad skill base. And, only consider programs from nationally- or regionally-accredited institutions, to ensure you receive the best online education possible, have access to federal financial aid, and eligibility for graduate admissions.

Required Courses

Online human resources bachelor’s degree programs usually incorporate a business core curriculum that includes classes in finance, accounting, marketing, economics, communications, and more. Major courses address human resources specifically, with classes in labor law, management, leadership, and more. Required courses may include:

  • Managing Human Resources
  • Organizational Communication
  • Employee Compensation
  • Employee Training and Development
  • Strategic Management

Common Career Paths

Some potential careers for those with a bachelor’s degree in Human Resources Management include:

Human Resources Manager

  • Expected Growth: 13%
  • Average Annual Salary: $113,980

Human resources managers are responsible for hiring and motivating employees at businesses, corporations and other organizations. During the hiring process, they advertise for open positions, filter resumes to identify the most viable candidates for the job, and lead those applicants through the interview and hiring process.

Alongside these responsibilities, human resources managers work with the management team at a company, contributing to establishing strategic plans for the success of the company and performing other management tasks. Individuals with college degrees and certification will have the best job prospects in human resources. The above salary and employment growth figures were gathered from the BLS, and represent average incomes.

Training and Development Managers

  • Expected Growth: 15%
  • Average Annual Salary: $99,710

The job of a training manager or training specialist requires an individual to be skilled both in interpersonal communication and in corporate and organizational training. They must also have a knack for teaching, as they are responsible for conducting training and development programs for employees. Training managers also help employees adjust to new technology that companies implement. These specialists may put together orientation programs and develop on-the-job training programs. Figures above were provided by the BLS.

Human Resources Specialists

  • Expected Growth: 21%
  • Average Annual Salary: $61,155

Human resources specialists are responsible for attracting and retaining qualified employees and key talent in a wide variety of industries. Because they have to actively find certain types of employees, they are frequently on the go, building contacts in the community, attending job fairs and visiting college campuses in hopes of finding good candidates to fill open positions.

Like human resources managers, they screen, interview and sometimes test applicants to determine whether they are a good fit for a company or organization. Figures above were provided by the BLS.

Compensation and Benefits Managers

  • Expected Growth: 3%
  • Average Annual Salary: $101,620

Compensation and benefits managers coordinate the employee payment structure in a company or corporation. They evaluate whether salaries and wages are in line with market values for the industry, the best methods for administering payroll, and evaluate employee compensations policies, among many other tasks. Benefits managers carry out similar responsibilities for benefits plans and policies. Most compensation and benefits managers need a bachelor’s degree in human resources or a related field. Figures above were provided by the BLS.

Social and Community Service Managers

  • Expected Growth: 27%
  • Average Annual Salary: $65,625

Social and community services managers direct, coordinate, and manage social and human services programs and organizations, either as part of government or nonprofit efforts. Hiring, managing, and training staff is a large part of a social service manager’s responsibilities. As a result, bachelor’s degree in human resources management is particularly useful in the social services field. Most social service managers must have a bachelor’s degree, and some positions may require a graduate degree. Figures above were provided by the BLS.


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