20 Careers in Human Resources Management

20 Careers in Human Resources Management

Human Resources Management is a vital organ of any organization. It is like the root or the engine that holds and propels the workforce. HRM strategically contributes to organizations by aligning human resources with business objectives. This alignment proves critical in navigating market shifts and sustaining competitiveness within respective industries (Azash, 2023).

According to  McKinsey, organizations with effective HR practices are more likely to outperform their competitors. The study revealed that companies with a remarkable focus on HR practices exhibit higher employee engagement, lower turnover rates, and greater profitability. This underscores the critical role that HR professionals play in shaping organizational culture and driving business success. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of human resources specialists is projected to grow 6% from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is primarily driven by an increasing number of laws and regulations related to worker rights and greater workplace equality. The latter is due to corporate diversity and its benefits, which organizations will continue to invest in to boost performance. 

HR is all-encompassing in terms of recruitment and talent administration, as well as HR analytics and organization design, which are only a few examples. It is also responsible for providing the resilient and adaptive workforce with the necessary skills to face new challenges like technology changes (Goswami, 2018) along with shifting marketplaces and regulatory conditions. Many career paths diverge from the discipline of human resources management, and this shows that there are several opportunities to offer those seeking to make significant contributions to the lives of employees and organizations. 

Human Resources Management Career

Is Human Resources a good career?


Human Resources Management is considered to be a rewarding occupation for people-oriented individuals who feel satisfied when their efforts lead to improved employee morale. According to J. Lounsbury et al., traits that align well with the organizational aspects of HRM tend to enhance satisfaction, suggesting that HR is suitable for those who enjoy working closely with people and managing organizational dynamics. The field also continually grows: high demand for professionals and competitive salaries are some of the trends defining the industry. HRM involves a broad range of responsibilities, including recruitment, employee relations, facilitation of in-service training, and more. Professionals in this sector are required to have certain competencies such as interpersonal skills and business management, leadership, business communication, conflict resolution, strategy and creative problem-solving, and creating a positive work environment. In addition, they must also be able to provide a supportive workplace. In making critical decisions that maintain organizational congruence, HR professionals have a significant role to play. 

Does HR make a lot of money?

The yearly income of professionals who work in HR can be affected by several factors, such as job type, experience, industry, and location. They typically receive good salaries across the board. Although starting positions like HR Assistants may not pay handsomely, they offer a chance to rise through the ranks and grow into managerial and executive jobs, which earn much higher wages. Senior HR specialists at big firms or those working, e.g., compensation and benefits managers, are also well paid, and their wages go beyond six figures sometimes.

Namely's database of 1,000 companies reveals that Human Resource Management has an average salary of $94,949 across all levels of experience. While HR Managers make an awesome $106,910 on average every year, HR Specialists only get around $59,180. Those amounts are far higher than the cross-industry median wage for US workers, which stands at $44k.

Moreover, there is significant potential for an increase in earnings with career progression for HR professionals. Salaries boost significantly when you move from entry-level to middle-level positions in HR, i.e., 58%, or from middle-level to top-level roles, i.e., 121%. Organizations with 101-300 employees usually offer the best compensation packages for HR employees.

Is HR a stressful job?

Various factors, like the work environment, the type of work an individual is doing, and personality, determine whether HR can be a stressful job or not. According to SHRM, HR professionals are often faced with challenges such as handling cases of employee conflicts, disciplinary matters arising out of worker misconduct, complaints, and ensuring compliance with policies that may lead to stress. Employees usually approach them first in case they have issues or concerns that require emotional support. Some common stressors include managing employee terminations, responding to employee complaints, and ensuring regulatory compliance.

However, this does not mean that Human Resource Professionals do not find their jobs rewarding. They are integral in establishing a positive workplace culture, helping employees improve their skills and qualifications, and making sure everything runs like clockwork within the company. Avey et al (2009) imply that effective HRM practices are important for HR professionals in terms of dealing with stress and performing well in their jobs.

What does HR do all day?

The daily activities of HR professionals can vary significantly based on their specific role within the organization. Common tasks include:

  • Recruiting and staffing: Posting job ads, screening candidates, conducting interviews, and onboarding new hires.

  • Employee relations: Addressing employee concerns, resolving conflicts, and ensuring workplace harmony.

  • Training and development: Organizing and facilitating training sessions, career development programs, and workshops.

  • Performance management: Overseeing performance reviews, providing feedback, and discussing career progression with employees.

  • Benefits and compensation: Administering employee benefits and payroll and ensuring competitive compensation structures.

  • Compliance: Ensuring all HR activities comply with federal, state, and local laws.


Top 20 Careers in Human Resources Management

Entry-Level Careers in HRM

1. HR Assistant

Starting at the foundational level, an HR Assistant supports daily administrative tasks in the HR department. This role involves managing employee records, assisting with the recruitment process, and providing clerical support. It's an excellent starting point for anyone looking to enter the field of HR.

2. Recruitment Coordinator

Recruitment Coordinators streamline the hiring process. They schedule interviews, communicate with candidates, and assist in organizing recruitment events. This position is crucial for maintaining an efficient recruitment operation.

3. Training and Development Coordinator

These coordinators organize and facilitate company training programs. Their responsibilities include preparing instructional materials, setting up training schedules, and sometimes even delivering content. This role is pivotal in ensuring employees' growth and development align with organizational goals.

4. HRIS Analyst

HR Information Systems (HRIS) Analysts manage and analyze data related to HR functions. They ensure that all HR-related systems are maintained and functional, providing critical support in the tech-driven aspects of modern HRM.

Mid-Level Careers in HRM

1. HR Generalist

An HR Generalist handles a broad range of HR tasks, from recruiting and staffing to handling employee relations. This role requires a good understanding of all HR facets and often acts as a bridge between management and staff.

2. Human Resources Officer

The Human Resources Officer is key to implementing HR policies and procedures within the organization. They are typically responsible for a wide array of HR functions, including recruitment, staff development, and maintaining employee records. This role demands strong organizational skills and the ability to handle sensitive information discreetly and professionally. Human Resources Officers often work closely with senior managers to ensure HR strategies are aligned with organizational goals.

3. Recruitment Specialist

Specializing further in the recruitment process, Recruitment Specialists focus on attracting and hiring top talent. They develop recruitment strategies, build candidate pipelines, and are adept at selecting the right fit for the company's culture and needs.

4. Employee Relations Specialist

These specialists work to strengthen the employer-employee relationship. They address concerns, manage disputes, and ensure regulatory compliance, making them key to maintaining a positive organizational environment.

5. Compensation and Benefits Analyst

Compensation and Benefits Analysts design and administer employee compensation and benefits programs. Their work involves strategic planning to ensure that compensation packages are both competitive and sustainable.

6. Learning and Development Specialist

Focusing on the growth aspect of HR, these specialists design and implement educational programs. They assess training needs and measure the impact of their programs on employee performance and business outcomes.

Senior-Level Careers in HRM

1. HR Manager

HR Managers oversee operations within the HR department, leading a team of HR professionals. They strategize on larger HR initiatives and ensure alignment with organizational goals. This role demands strong leadership and a deep understanding of all HR functions.

2. Talent Acquisition Manager

This role focuses on not just filling positions, but on attracting, engaging, and retaining top talent. Talent Acquisition Managers develop sophisticated recruitment strategies and metrics to measure their effectiveness.

3. Employee Relations Manager

At this level, Employee Relations Managers handle more complex employee issues. They are involved in policy formulation, high-level conflict resolution, and ensuring labor law compliance across the organization.

4. HR Business Partner

HR Business Partners align business objectives with employees and management in designated business units. They provide strategic advice on HR issues and are key players in organizational change.

5. Diversity and Inclusion Manager

These managers champion diversity initiatives within the organization. They develop policies that promote an inclusive workplace culture, ensuring that diversity is not just acknowledged but embraced and leveraged for business success.

Executive-Level Careers in HRM

1. Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO)

The CHRO is a top executive role, overseeing all aspects of human resources systems, including strategic direction and long-term planning. They are integral to shaping the company's culture and ensuring it aligns with business objectives.

2. VP of Human Resources

The Vice President of Human Resources plays a strategic role in managing the HR functions across larger organizations. They oversee various HR initiatives and ensure that HR strategies are seamlessly integrated into the overall business strategy.

3. Global HR Director

Global HR Directors manage HR activities across multiple international locations. Their role is crucial in aligning HR practices with global business strategies and cultural nuances.

4. Organizational Development Director

These directors focus on improving organizational effectiveness through the development and implementation of practices that foster sustainable growth and employee satisfaction.

5. HR Consultant

HR Consultants offer advice and expertise to organizations to solve specific HR issues or to improve overall HR practices. They often work with multiple businesses, providing insights based on a broad view of HR across different sectors.

Bonus - Emerging Careers in HRM

1. People Analytics Specialist

With a focus on data, People Analytics Specialists use analytical tools to study HR processes and improve decision-making. They identify trends, predict outcomes, and guide strategic HR initiatives.

2. Remote Work Specialist

This new and rapidly growing field addresses the challenges and opportunities of remote work. Remote Work Specialists develop policies, offer support, and implement systems that facilitate effective remote working environments.


The field of Human Resources Management offers diverse career opportunities that cater to various interests and skills, from administrative support to strategic management roles. As businesses continue to change, so too does HR, adapting to technological advancements and changing global dynamics. For those aspiring to enter this field or seeking advancement, HRM provides a robust career path with the potential to make a significant impact on organizational success.

Belinda Pondayi
This article was written by Belinda a Consultant at Industrial Psychology Consultants (Pvt) Ltd

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