Now is a good time to be in human resources. HR jobs are on the rise, according to data compiled by employment and staffing firm Randstad.
“The improving economy and advancements in technology have been significant factors in job growth in the human resources field,” says Jodi Chavez, president of Randstad Professionals. “As companies continue to grow and evolve, so does their need for new talent. Organizations are increasingly looking for human resource professionals to assist with recruiting, talent management, employee relations and professional development.”
As of October 2016, there were nearly 50,000 HR job openings nationwide.
And, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, while the national unemployment rate is 4.7%, the jobless rate for HR professionals is less than half of that: 2.2%.
The most in-demand HR jobs, and average salaries of those positions, are:
· HR generalist/business partner: $62,826 to $75,339
· HR manager/director: $99,884 to $121,227
· Compensation and benefits manager: $108,161 to $131,274
· Learning and development specialist: $44,200 to $85,540
· Recruitment specialist: $62,581 to $75,954
Both economic growth and the recent talent shortage have led to a high demand and increased need for compensation and benefits managers, in particular, Chavez says.
“These professionals advise organizations on how their employer reputation stacks up in comparison to their competitors when it comes to hiring and retaining the best talent,” she says. “Salary and benefits are important factors to job seekers when choosing an employer, and benefits managers evaluate compensation packages in the market to determine how attractive the company’s package should be to win over top talent.”
Those tasks are especially vital as employers express concern over handling a growing list of administrative tasks. A recent Guardian Life Insurance survey found that a majority of U.S. employers feel overwhelmed in the race to control costs, manage benefit programs and meet compliance regulations.
But that increased complexity — with many new regulatory and compliance laws — is one reason why HR jobs are on the rise, Chavez says.
“The recent and forthcoming changes in the industry are creating a demand for more human resources professionals with specialized training and certifications who can not only manage the hiring, training, and benefits for new talent, but are also able to analyze and anticipate the organization’s business needs,” she says. “Organizations will rely more heavily on their human resource department in determining compliance program requirements and executing business strategies with regards to policy changes in federal wage, paid leave, insurance and more.”
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