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How to Become a Human Resource Manager with Limited Experience

By April 11, 2023 April 5th, 2024

Human Resources (HR) is a vital function of any organization, responsible for managing the people side of business operations.

As a Human Resources Manager, you will play a crucial role in attracting, developing, and retaining top talent within your organization. If you are considering a career in HR, we will guide you through the steps you need to take to become a successful HR manager.

From obtaining the right education to gaining experience to building a professional network and developing key skills, this article will provide you with the knowledge and resources you need to start your journey toward a career in human resources.

Pro-Tip: Human Crapital is a great free resource for Human Resource professionals looking to gain knowledge and useful career tips.


What is a human resource manager?

A human resource manager is the ultimate multitasker, juggling a wide range of responsibilities that keep the gears of an organization running smoothly. They are the go-to person for all things related to the people side of business operations, from talent acquisition to managing employee relations, to making sure the company’s practices comply with legal and regulatory standards.

But beyond that, a human resources manager is a true business partner, collaborating with other departments and leaders to achieve the organization’s goals. They are strategic thinkers who understand the importance of talent and staffing and how employee benefits and happiness drive the company’s growth and success.

They are the guardians of the company’s culture and values, as well as the mediators of conflicts and enablers of positive work environments. In short, human resources managers are the unsung heroes that keep the company’s human capital functioning at its best.


Why is a human resource manager an important role?

A human resources manager plays a crucial role within any organization, not just because they handle the day-to-day HR responsibilities, but also because they play a major role in shaping the organization’s culture and driving its success. They are responsible for captivating and sustaining top talent, which is necessary for any company looking to grow and stay competitive in today’s market.

Furthermore, HR managers ensure that the company’s practices comply with legal and regulatory standards, which can save the company from costly legal disputes. Additionally, they act as a liaison between management and employees, fostering positive relationships and promoting open communication, which leads to increased employee engagement and productivity.

A human resources manager is a strategic business partner who plays an essential role in ensuring the organization’s success and growth by managing its most valuable asset: its people.


8 Steps on How to Become an HR Manager

1. Get a bachelor’s degree in human resources or a related field.

Many HR manager positions require at least a bachelor’s degree in human resources management, business administration, or a related field. This step is necessary because it provides the foundation of knowledge and understanding of the field and career path that is required to be a successful HR manager.

You may consider studying these bachelor’s degree programs to obtain a job in human resources:

  • Human resources
  • Business administration
  • Finance or Accounting
  • Economics
  • Marketing
  • Business Management
  • Social Science

2. Gain professional experience in the field.

Many HR manager positions require a certain amount of work experience in human resources, such as working in entry-level positions, as an HR generalist or human resource specialist.

3. Be a certified professional in human resources (PHR) or Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).

The PHR and SPHR certifications are offered by the Human Resources Certification Institute (HRCI) and demonstrate a level of knowledge and skills in the field. These certification programs demonstrate to employers that the individual has the knowledge and skills required to be an effective HR manager.

4. Build a strong professional network.

Joining professional organizations such as the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) can help you connect with other HR professionals and learn about job opportunities. Moreover, it allows individuals to learn from others who have experience and knowledge in the field, and to stay informed about industry trends and developments.

5. Develop strong leadership and communication skills.

As an HR manager, you will be responsible for leading teams and communicating effectively with employees, managers, and executives. HR managers often act as liaisons between employees and management, and effective communication, organizational leadership, and interpersonal skills are critical to be successful in this role.

6. Develop a strong understanding of employment laws and regulations.

As an HR manager, it is important to have a good understanding of federal and state employment laws and regulations to ensure compliance and avoid legal issues. HR managers are responsible for ensuring compliance with laws and regulations, and staying informed on changes in these areas is critical to be successful in this role.

7. Stay current with industry trends and best practices.

The field of human resources is constantly evolving, so it is important to stay current with new developments and best practices to be a successful HR manager. One way to do so is by subscribing to HR newsletters. Check out Human Crapital here.

8. Pursue continuing education and professional development opportunities.

Many organizations require HR managers to maintain certifications or pursue additional education, such as a master’s degree, and training to stay up-to-date on industry trends, tools, and best practices.


People Also Ask These Questions About How to Become an HR Manager

Q: How do I stay informed about the latest industry trends and developments in the field of human resources?

  • A: To stay informed about the latest industry trends and developments in human resources, it is important to join professional organizations, such as the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), attend events that focus on HR topics, and frequently visit the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) for the recent stats and numbers.

    Next, reading industry publications, such as HR Magazine and Harvard Business Review, can help you stay informed about the latest trends and developments in the field. Lastly, following thought leaders and experts on social media platforms, such as LinkedIn, can also provide valuable insights and updates on the industry.

Q: How can I network and gain exposure to the field of human resources to increase my chances of becoming an HR manager?

  • A: One way to network is by joining professional organizations and attending conferences or webinars that focus on HR topics. Second, volunteering for projects or committees within the organization can also provide an opportunity to build relationships and gain exposure to the field.

    Another way to gain exposure is by working on a side project; for example, starting your own blog or podcast, where you can share your thoughts and ideas on human resource management and build a following in the industry.

Q: What are some key skills and qualities that are important for an HR manager to have?

  • A: Some key skills and qualities that are important for an HR manager to have include strong communication and interpersonal skills, the ability to think strategically, strong problem-solving and decision-making abilities, and the ability to stay up-to-date with legal and regulatory changes that impact the field.

    Additionally, the ability to work in conflict resolution, a high level of emotional intelligence, and the ability to build strong relationships with employees and management are also important qualities for an HR manager to have.

Q: How long does it typically take to advance to an HR manager role?

  • A: It typically takes several years of experience in an HR role and a combination of education and relevant certifications to advance to an HR manager role.

Q: How do I know if a career in HR management is the right path for me?

  • A: To know if a career in HR management is the right path for you, it is important to assess your interests, skills, and values. If you have a passion for people, enjoy problem-solving, have strong communication skills, and have the ability to work well under pressure, then a career in HR may be a good fit for you.

    Additionally, considering the job requirements and duties of an HR manager, if you think you can handle them and enjoy them, then it’s likely that you would enjoy working as an HR manager.

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