Human Resources Managers oversee entire HR departments to ensure efficient functioning. The level to which HR managers are involved depends on the company and any shortages in other departments. For example, an HR manager may have to step in to the role of a benefits specialist or recruiter when staff that normally take care of those necessities are unable. Similar to any other management position, being an HR manager requires that someone have excellent multi-tasking skills, leadership abilities, and can work with and manage multiple personality types.

Job Outlook for HR Managers

The HR field is a steady one because there will always be a need for human resources experts. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 13% job growth for HR managers by 2020. The average salary is $99,180 or $47.86 per hour. According to the BLS, this lucrative position that is bordering on the six-figure mark usually requires a bachelor’s degree. As of 2010, there were 71,800 HR managers in the U.S.

Work Environment for HR Managers

HR managers are a necessity for every corporation, company, government agency, and organization so the work environment can vary drastically. Manager sin larger companies often have a traditional 9-5 work week overseeing multiple staff persons (BLS). However, managers can also be found in smaller organizations and might be in charge of 100% of the business’ HR necessities. Others might work for HR outsourcing agencies and handle a portfolio of clients.

What do HR Managers Do?

The simple answer is that HR managers oversee all of the nuts and bolts of the administrative arm of a company. HR managers are in charge of talent recruitment, employee benefits, mediating conflicts in the workplace, hiring and termination, record keeping, and strategic planning with executives. Of course, some HR managers depend on a team of professionals and mostly exercise sharp leadership skills. However, others are more hands-on and have to wear several hats.

Personality Traits of HR Managers

HR managers must be knowledgeable about company policy and state and federal laws. In addition, they should have the ability to work with all personality types, have honed leadership skills, and they should possess expert communication skills. Prior managerial experience, many years in the HR field, or a degree with an emphasis in HR can help develop these skills. It takes a person with confidence, ambition, and superior time management in order to be successful as a HR manager.

Education Requirements for HR Managers

The BLS lists a bachelor’s degree as a requirement for an HR manager. However, this is not a federally issued requirement and it can vary from employer to employer. Some companies might prefer that a candidate holds an advanced degree while others prefer experience over degrees. No matter what an employer desires, holding a degree in a related field can only help someone secure a position. Related degrees include Business, Communication, Economics, Finance, and Mathematics, depending on the field of interest.

How to Become an HR Manager

Being a manager in any industry requires knowledge and expertise in the field. HR managers might start out as HR generalists or in another department. Accreditation through the HR Certification Institute (HRCI) can also help a person transition into an HR managerial position. Since this is a stable job with a potentially lucrative income, expect competition to be fierce. Unlike other HR positions, there the number of HR managers is usually limited. HR managers must build healthy, fulfilling working relationships with all colleagues, from entry-level staff to executives.

Taking on the role of HR manager can be stressful at times, but it is also a very rewarding career. Individuals who are on this career path need to focus on the business needs of companies and clients. Work on honing and developing related skills now to prepare for a successful future.