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Finding and Becoming An Excellent Human Resources Manager

Updated on July 16, 2011

At one point or another, all of us have had a run-in with a human resources manager. Whether it's watching Toby's dead-pan antics on the hit show "The Office" or being screened for a job position, we've all had a small sampling of what a human resources manager's responsibilities are. Essentially, they are the middle person between employee and employer whose main responsibility is working with people and making sure they are satisfied with their employment.

Human resource departments are integral to the smooth and efficient running of any kind of company. Studies have shown that when employees are happy (which means they are being fairly treated and fairly compensated) than an organization's productivity and chances for success increase. And a well-qualified HR department also recruits, hires, and trains the best talent available, which makes employers happier as well.

Because of the crucial role that an HR Department plays in the successful functioning of an organization, staffing Hr is an important consideration for employers. The position of HR manager is also a job that is attracting many up-and-coming professionals. Whether you're an employer who is currently staffing HR or someone who aspires to become an HR professional, the following paragraphs include bits of information and advice to let you know what qualities and features make an excellent HR manager.

First of all, HR managers must be able to work with and handle a variety of different personalities and people. Part of an HR manager's responsibilities is to resolve conflicts and disagreements between employees, and so he or she must have a record of being diplomatic and capable of solving problems quickly and calmly. Gaining experience to develop and prove these skills is not difficult. For instance, working in a retail environment or customer service positions can improve conflict-solving skills, and any type of managerial experience in which a person is responsible for a team or staff shows competent problem-solving skills.

Of course, an HR manager also needs to have a college degree. A bachelor's degree is usually all that is required, but a graduate degree or certificate is also helpful. Although the college degree doesn't necessarily have to be any one particularly area of study, degrees in personnel management, human resources, or labor relations are preferred. However, degrees in business, behavioral sciences, or psychology are also helpful in the HR profession.

Getting work experience in HR environments is also beneficial in becoming a great HR manager. Completing an internship with an HR department while still in school or soon after graduating is a great way to gain experience in the HR field and will make a person a more competitive candidate when applying for HR positions.

A good HR manager must also be capable of developing creative strategies and generating new ideas to help motivate employees and solve workplace problems. A good HR candidate will have experience in these areas and may even already have proposals for benefit plans or incentive plans to help improve work performance.

Of course, it is crucial that an HR manager be professional. Candidates should not have a history of inter-employee relationships and conflicts. An HR manager's responsibility is to help resolve conflicts, and if he or she becomes too involved in the lives of employees, he or she may not be able to perform their jobs adequately. Also, HR manager candidates should not have a history of misconduct. Resolving conflicts involving an HR manager would defeat the purpose of having an HR manager in the first place.

Aside from having a record clean of past misconduct, a good HR manager will also have a good reputation of being a hard worker who doesn't gossip and is friendly to all people. For job hunters, remember that employers will most likely call references to ensure that you meet these qualifications, so be sure that you always leave your employers with a good impression of your personality and work ethic.

Being educated in the current laws and practices that govern employee and employer relations, union relations, worker compensation, and the workplace environment is also crucial for a good HR manager to have. An HR manager has to be able to ensure that all personnel procedures are in harmony with the law and know how to handle situations in which people violate these rules.

A qualification that a good HR manager should have is good writing ability. An HR manager will often have to write policies, memos, and announcements, and good control over language usage and grammar as well as the ability to express thoughts clearly and accessibly is crucial.

HR managers must also have a host of other qualities in order balance a variety of responsibilities. For instance, they must be a good communicator, so job seekers should ensure that they represent themselves well during interviews. Those responsible for staffing HR departments should place particular emphasis on the interview to screen potential candidates. Qualified candidates should also be well-organized and good at performing administrative functions.

And finally, a great HR manager will have knowledge about the company's specific industry. Signs that show a candidate has researched the company and its procedures indicate that the person already has the knowledge to implement and improve current company practices. And it also shows that the person is self-motivated and driven to excel.

The job outlook for HR managers is quite good. Jobs in HR are expected to rise in the next several years and are available in a variety of organizations including not-for-profit, corporate, and government agencies. By using the above criteria to evaluate your own qualifications or the qualifications of potential HR workers for your organization, you will be able to find or become the best HR managers in the workforce.


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