2013, 2014 and 2015 have been interesting years for the Human Resource profession, and after coming out of the recession the HR function of the business is more valued than ever. Traditionally HR Management (or Personnel Management, as it was called up to the 1990’s) was an area that largely attracted women whose work was predominantly hands-on and operational. Very often these people started their careers in administration functions and “fell into the role” over time. Personnel Officers and Managers were not typically degree qualified did nor did they have a place on the senior management team. They were viewed as a cost centre and rarely developed beyond middle management.

How things have changed!

  • Tertiary qualifications (with a major in HR) are minimal acceptable standards as an entry point to most HR roles.
  • Many companies also look for CIPD membership.
  • The percentage of males graduates attracted to the profession increases year on year.
  • Whilst some smaller companies still have Generalist HR functions, bigger companies have developed operational HR shared service teams. These centralised teams work closely also side Centres of Excellence and HR Business Partners.
  • HR Directors most certainly have a place at the “top table” with attractive salaries and packages to match.
  • HR Management is no longer seen as a “necessary evil” – it now seen as a critical ingredient in the success of the business.
  • The really exciting part is that these is an increasing demand for specialists to fill the ever increasing number of specialist HR roles – such as Rewards, Org Design, HRIS, Engagement/Communications, Industrial Relations, Learning and development or Talent Management.

So if you are a 6th year student or a University graduate with an interest in business, please make sure that you give due consideration to a career in HR. Your future is bright!!