HR Roles to Consider

Are you considering a master’s degree in human resources to move from a generalist or specialist role into HR management? An MBA is the most common educational requirement for positions at the managerial level, where there are many leadership positions with six-figure salaries. If you are interested in learning more about the challenging and rewarding supervisory, directorial and senior-level management roles in HR, this article will provide a quick overview to jump-start your research.

There are numerous roles you may eventually consider, so we will focus on some of the most widely available positions. This article will cover the income potential and levels of responsibility for each of your career options.

Human Resources Management: A Diverse Spectrum of Roles

In general, HR managers are directly responsible for the overall administration, coordination and evaluation of human resource functions. They typically perform a variety of managerial duties and oversee teams of generalists and specialists. Human resources departments in larger organizations tend to have more management roles, with managers specializing in specific disciplines.

In smaller firms, HR managers commonly have broader responsibilities. These include controlling all activities of the HR department, developing personnel policies and procedures, formulating personnel plans, overseeing recruitment efforts, updating compensation programs, and ensuring compliance with employment laws.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median pay for HR managers is $110,120 per year, as of July 2018. Projected job growth between 2016 and 2026 is 9 percent. Related positions in HR management, according to the BLS are as follows:

Administrative Services Managers: ($94,020 per year) Organizations rely on these managers to plan and coordinate administrative services, including recordkeeping, office upkeep and maintenance of facilities.

Compensation and Benefits Managers: ($119,120 per year) The tasks involved in administering compensation and benefits to employees are developed and supervised by these managers.

Training and Development Managers: ($108,250 per year) All of the professional development and knowledge/skills training activities of an organization are planned and directed by these managers. provides median annual salary data for the following managerial roles (October 2018).

Regional HR Manager: ($109,120 per year) Staffing, employee relations, training, and health and safety programs are some of the many HR programs that these managers design and implement for a region.

HRIS Manager: ($114,685) An organization’s Human Resources Information Systems (HRIS) functions fall under the purview of this manager.

Labor Relations Manager: ($119,091) This position plans and supervises labor policies, procedures and programs, and negotiates agreements between labor and management.

EEO Supervisor:  ($77,789) The activities involved in staying compliant with Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) laws, including affirmative action, fall under the purview of this role.

Benefits Director: ($137,037) This role supervises an organization’s health and welfare benefits, and manages the communication of changes and updates to employees.

Recruiting Director: ($139,252) Employment programs, including recruitment processes, are the domain of this role.

Human Resources Director (Autonomous): ($145,221) All HR functions from hiring and compensation to training, safety regulations and employee relations are overseen by this director.

Organizational Development Director: ($145,427) This critical role is responsible for the direction of organizational development programs, policies and procedures.

Leaders in the HR profession have many rewarding career paths to choose from in human resources departments in virtually any industry. For those who choose this profession, a specialized MBA in HR management provides a strong educational platform to support a successful management career.

Learn more about UNC’s online MBA program with a Concentration in HR Management.


The Balance: Sample Human Resources Manager Job Description

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Human Resources Managers

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