Human Resources Programs

human resources meets with a candidate

Human resources jobs give people the opportunity to work behind the scenes to build and maintain companies.

Involved in almost all aspects of a corporation’s administrative branch, these employees often take on leadership, clerical, and accounting roles.

Education & Training

Those looking to work directly with staff while helping a business grow can enroll in human resources classes. Finance, computer, and even public speaking courses give each student the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed. After graduation, hopefuls can seek employment at places like medical facilities, universities, and nonprofit organizations.

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For some entry-level positions, job hopefuls must at least possess a high school diploma. However, employers usually look for candidates who have completed some sort of formal education.

In these cases, an associate’s or bachelor’s degree from a local college, accredited university, or human resources trade school suffices.

Students usually take a courses such as business, accounting, and psychology. These classes, along with projects and internships, prepare job hopefuls for the industry and may help them when crafting a human resources resume.


While not always a human resources requirement, some HR assistants take exams to specialize their knowledge, boost portfolios, and enhance their chances of hire or advancement in larger companies.

Those interested can earn the following human resources certificates:

  • Human Resources Management Professional
  • Global Professional in Human Resources
  • Professional in Human Resources
  • Human Resources Business Professional


On average, entry-level individuals make between $35k and $43k annually, though this total varies based on a candidate’s experience, location, and human resources education. For example, those that work for nonprofit organizations earn about $39k, while those at large factories or corporations could see a salary of approximately $55k or more.

Below is a table with average yearly salary and wage per state.

State Hourly wage Annual wage
Alabama $30.37 $63,170.00
Alaska $33.82 $70,340.00
Arizona $31.81 $66,160.00
Arkansas $28.24 $58,750.00
California $41.47 $86,260.00
Colorado $39.18 $81,500.00
Connecticut $35.99 $74,860.00
Delaware $37.17 $77,310.00
District of Columbia $49.83 $103,650.00
Florida $33.06 $68,760.00
Georgia $31.88 $66,300.00
Guam $26.00 $54,090.00
Hawaii $32.72 $68,070.00
Idaho $30.73 $63,920.00
Illinois $33.39 $69,440.00
Indiana $30.03 $62,460.00
Iowa $31.00 $64,490.00
Kansas $31.92 $66,390.00
Kentucky $30.99 $64,470.00
Louisiana $28.27 $58,800.00
Maine $33.96 $70,640.00
Maryland $39.23 $81,590.00
Massachusetts $38.43 $79,940.00
Michigan $32.63 $67,870.00
Minnesota $36.28 $75,450.00
Mississippi $26.22 $54,530.00
Missouri $31.29 $65,080.00
Montana $28.31 $58,890.00
Nebraska $29.32 $60,990.00
Nevada $31.25 $65,000.00
New Hampshire $34.78 $72,340.00
New Jersey $41.23 $85,750.00
New Mexico $30.63 $63,710.00
New York $40.95 $85,170.00
North Carolina $33.11 $68,870.00
North Dakota $31.75 $66,040.00
Ohio $33.00 $68,650.00
Oklahoma $29.58 $61,520.00
Oregon $33.48 $69,640.00
Pennsylvania $33.02 $68,680.00
Puerto Rico $20.73 $43,110.00
Rhode Island $39.58 $82,330.00
South Carolina $31.39 $65,280.00
South Dakota $30.00 $62,390.00
Tennessee $29.28 $60,900.00
Texas $32.62 $67,840.00
Utah $31.98 $66,530.00
Vermont $32.60 $67,810.00
Virgin Islands $26.22 $54,540.00
Virginia $37.53 $78,060.00
Washington $41.98 $87,330.00
West Virginia $30.14 $62,690.00
Wisconsin $31.52 $65,550.00
Wyoming $29.20 $60,740.00

Occupation: Occupation:Human Resources Specialists (SOC Code131071)

Career Overview

What Is Human Resources?

From training new hires to managing a company’s payroll, the human resources department works with current colleagues to ensure the business runs smoothly. Anyone interested in pursuing a human resources career should be personable, organized, and tech-savvy.

Individuals in HR positions often act as a bridge between workers and superiors. If there is an issue between team members, the department steps in to resolve the problem as best as they can. This includes meeting with staff, filing grievances, and reporting any discrepancies to upper management.

Most new hires work regular business hours, though they may spend some evenings and weekends traveling to job fairs, recruitment events, or seminars. Because associates in this field possess skillsets that are valuable in many industries, each employee’s day-to-day tasks differ based on experience, specialties, and job location.

What Are HR Assistant Job Duties?

HR assistants perform a number of human resources duties daily. Most commonly, they play a big role in a company’s hiring process. From posting job ads online to interviewing and hiring ideal candidates, these workers make sure businesses are investing their time and money in the best applicants.

When a worker signs on with a corporation, assistants may also help in the human resources training and orientation process. This includes reviewing the handbook, conducting the benefit enrollment process, and giving the team member any necessary log-in information.

As they spend most of the day in an office setting, assistants take on several clerical tasks, such as:

  • Answering telephone calls
  • Maintaining calendars and spreadsheets
  • Filing paperwork and documents
  • Compiling and sending emails
  • Scheduling meetings

What Types of Skills Should HR Assistants Possess?

First and foremost, those looking to pursue human resources careers should have strong interpersonal skills. These employees interact with potential hires, current workers, supervisors, and CEOs. Having the ability to communicate efficiently both in person and via email, as well as possessing a friendly demeanor, can ensure an assistant’s success.

Organized and detail-oriented associates tend to transition well into HR positions. These jobs often include scheduling, compiling, and managing several projects and appointments at one time. It’s important for team members to be thorough when reporting or checking information.

Additionally, employers typically seek individuals who are problem-solvers. Often faced with the concerns of disgruntled or confused workers, HR assistants need to quickly assess the situation and suggest a short- or long-term solution to the issue.

Why Do Human Resource Assistants Need the Ability to Be Discreet?

Human resource assistants aid in hiring new staff. Because of this, they often have access to confidential information, including the addresses, phone numbers, and social security numbers of each applicant. Discretion and professionalism are key human resources skills needed to ensure the safety of those working for the company.

These team members also act as the contact between workers and the higher-ups. If there is an issue between two individuals that needs addressed, HR assistants will often meet with the pair to find a solution. Additionally, team members may approach them in confidence to express a concern or file a grievance. It’s important for those in human resources careers to always act in an unbiased manner.

Work Environment

While employees sometimes travel to recruit candidates or present information at job fairs, most of their work entails compiling different types of paperwork. Once they begin their human resources careers, new hires should anticipate tasks like arranging files and reporting grievances. To complete these responsibilities smoothly and efficiently, associates should practice organization and precision.

While some HR assistants travel to school and job fairs to recruit new workers, most spend their time at a desk. It’s important for staff members to make each space as comfortable as possible to boost productivity. Computers and telephones are examples of human resources equipment used daily.

Some associates may organize important reports and documents in filing cabinets and binders as well. Standard office supplies such as scanners, printers, and other human resources tools are necessary for these tasks.

What Are Useful Skills for People in This Field?

  • Capable of balancing multiple projects at once
  • Experience with basic computer programs
  • Strong public speaking and presentation skills
  • Willingness to remain unbiased when listening to complaints or issues
  • Manages stressful situations with ease
  • Ability to lead a team and delegate tasks
  • Works well in a team or individually
  • Accepts criticism and feedback

Where Can They Work?

After obtaining a human resources degree, qualified candidates can apply for positions at a wide range of places, such as:

  • Schools and universities
  • Medical facilities
  • Retailers
  • Nonprofit organizations
  • Law firms
  • Banks

Corporations often send HR assistants out and about to promote the business’s services and recruit new employees. They travel to area job fairs and college campuses in search of potential candidates and clients. Workers present slideshows, pamphlets, and other informational human resources tools at events.

Can You Work Remotely?

While most companies prefer to hire in-house positions, there are some opportunities to work from home. Employees connect with their managers and supervisors via email, Skype, or conference call, and keep the team up-to-date on what they’re doing that day.

Similar to an on-site job, those looking for remote human resources careers should expect to set aside an uninterrupted four to eight hours daily for each shift. Job hopefuls must possess a laptop or have easy access to a computer with the necessary programs installed. These often include Microsoft Word and Excel, as well as company-specific software.

What Other Career Options Do They Have?

Due to their experience working directly with employees and clients, HR assistants can also find work in the customer service industry.

Representatives typically perform the following responsibilities:

  • Answer any questions from clients and employees
  • Process orders, forms, and other reports
  • Help to resolve any issues or concerns between employees or clientele
  • Manage incoming telephone calls, emails, and faxes
  • Follow store policies and guidelines

What Are Alternate Careers for HR Assistants?

Because of their strong interpersonal and organizational skills, candidates who obtain a human resources degree can pursue options in other industries, such as insurance. Like HR assistants, insurance agents contact potential clients, perform interviews, and handle each customer’s personal file. On average, they earn about $40k annually.