Human resources employment is available in large companies, government, and employment agencies. People who work in this field should have interpersonal skills, communication skills, and know how to use computer systems. All three are required for the different types of jobs available in human resources (HR). Educational requirements vary between the different HR jobs, and special certification is required for payroll accountants, human resources specialists, and pension plan administrators.
Interpersonal skills refer to the ability to work and relate well with others. In human resources employment, the driving force behind all tasks is the need to provide service to others. This skill is very important and forms the backbone of everything that is done in human resources.
Conflict management, coaching, and counseling are all skills that fall under the "interpersonal" umbrella. All these can be learned through specialized, focused courses on each specific area. Interpersonal skills, sometimes called soft skills, can be improved and enhanced throughout a lifetime and improve a person's relationships both in and out of the work environment.
For specialized roles in human resources, additional educational requirements may exist. Roles in compensation management typically require post-secondary education in statistics or math, for example. Management roles usually require a degree or diploma in business or management.
Communication is a core skill set for all the positions in human resources and includes both written and verbal skills. Business writing is a separate ability, and it can be learned through online courses or coaching. Many people who work in HR improve their career options simply by improving their communication skills.
Almost all human resources employment opportunities are heavily reliant on computer skills. This industry has been transformed from a paper-based functional area to one that has imbedded computer programs into all tasks. The vast majority of companies now use fully computerized systems that combine all HR functions into one complex, modular based system. Computer analysis, data entry, and troubleshooting skills are all required to perform even entry-level positions in human resources.
People who are interested in working in HR should investigate the different human resources systems available to learn more about how they work, what is required to use and support them, and their impact. These individuals should also look into advanced certification in computer applications and data analysis. Although a person may not have experience on the specific system that is used by a potential employer, the ability to learn new technical skills is essential.