HR careers: how to begin your journey

HR careers: how to begin your journey

At this time of year, careers and futures are at the forefront of many peoples’ minds. You might be an upcoming or recent graduate looking to begin your career. Or maybe you’re considering a career change and feel that HR might be the right place for you. HR as an industry is an evolving field with vast opportunities, and embarking on this career path can be both rewarding and exciting. But where, and how, do you start? From understanding HR roles, to working with specialist recruitment services, we’ll make sure you can begin your journey from the most informed place.

Why choose a career in HR?

Human Resources is not just about hiring, firing, and payroll. It’s about shaping a workforce and fostering a positive company culture. HR professionals play a crucial role in employee development, conflict resolution, and policy implementation. 

Fulfilment

In HR, you have the unique opportunity to impact both individuals and the broader organisation. By helping people thrive in their roles, you contribute to the overall success of the business. This dual impact makes HR a fulfilling career choice.

Challenges

As technology has improved to automate a lot of repetitive and time consuming tasks, HR is a much more strategic place. This dynamic business environment ensures that no two days are the same.

Development

The HR landscape is always evolving, driven by changes in employment laws, technology, and workplace trends. This means there are always new skills to learn and areas to grow, keeping your career both challenging and exciting.

Benefits as a graduate

For graduates, HR offers a plethora of entry-level positions such as HR Assistant or Recruitment Coordinator. These roles provide a solid foundation in HR practices and are a great way to gain hands-on experience while building your professional network.

Career progression

Starting your career in HR can lead to rapid progression. With the right skills and a proactive attitude, you can move up the ladder quickly. This gives you the opportunity to take on more responsibilities and higher-level roles in a relatively short amount of time.

Transferable skills

HR roles equip you with a huge range of transferable skills, including communication, problem-solving, and organisational abilities. These skills are highly valued across various industries, giving you the flexibility to pivot your career if needed.

Benefits as a career change

If you’re considering a career change, your previous work experience can be a significant asset. Skills from other fields, such as project management, customer service, or sales, can be highly relevant and valuable in HR.

Diverse opportunities

HR encompasses a wide range of functions, from training and development to growth strategy and business efficiency. This diversity allows you to find a niche that aligns with your interests and strengths, making the transition smoother and more enjoyable.

Different HR roles

When you start out in a new industry it can be helpful to understand how different job roles function. Building a network within the HR community can be really helpful. As you progress your career, this will open doors and provide valuable insights. Attend industry events, join HR forums, and connect with HR professionals on LinkedIn. Looking at an overview of the types of roles that you may see, many fall into these categories. 

HR Advisor

HR Advisors are responsible for providing guidance on HR policies and procedures, handling employee queries, and supporting various HR functions. They play a crucial role in ensuring compliance with employment law and fostering a positive work environment.

HR Manager

HR Managers oversee the HR department and are responsible for implementing HR strategies, managing employee relations, and ensuring the smooth running of HR operations. They act as a bridge between management and employees, facilitating communication and resolving conflicts.

HR Director

HR Directors hold senior leadership positions and are responsible for shaping the overall HR strategy and aligning it with the organisation’s goals. They oversee all HR functions, from recruitment and talent management to salary and benefits, playing a key role in driving organisational success and growth.

Specialist HR recruitment services 

Specialist HR recruitment services have in-depth knowledge of the HR market both locally and nationally. At HR Talent, for example, we match candidates with roles, locations and industries that align with their skills and career aspirations. This expert matching ensures a better fit and increases the likelihood of long-term success.

Exclusive opportunities

Recruitment agencies often have access to job openings that are not advertised publicly. By working with a specialist HR recruiter, you can tap into a hidden job market and find exclusive opportunities that might not be available through personal job search methods.

Support and guidance

At HR Talent, we provide ongoing support throughout the job search process. From refining your CV and preparing for interviews to negotiating job offers, you can count on us for valuable guidance and advice to help you secure the right role.

Understanding business needs

Recruitment services work closely with businesses in an ongoing way to understand their specific HR needs and requirements. This involves assessing the organisational culture, identifying skill gaps, and defining the ideal candidate profile. 

Streamlining the hiring process

Working in partnership, business and recruitment alignment streamlines the hiring process by handling tasks such as candidate sourcing, screening, and interviewing. This saves businesses time and resources, allowing organisations to focus on core activities while ensuring they find the right talent.

Improving retention rates

By providing a better match between candidates and roles, specialist HR recruitment services help improve employee retention rates. This leads to a more stable workforce and reduces the costs and disruptions associated with high turnover.

Starting a career in HR offers a wealth of opportunities whether you’re a graduate or career changer. With a focus on continuous learning, impactful work, and diverse roles, HR is an exciting field that promises growth and fulfilment. HR Talent works in a collaborative way that means that we understand the priorities of business and employees. So if you’re filling or seeking a vacancy, contact us to explore how partnership can work.

See other blog posts

When does a startup need to hire a HR Manager? When does a startup need to hire a HR Manager?

Identifying a tipping point in the growth of your startup that means you need to hire an HR manager can be tricky. It’s a common conundrum for smaller companies and new organisations that want to scale quickly, but keep costs low.  Ultimately, every company will need a HR team at some point, to help them enhance company culture, save money, and improve their hiring strategy. But hiring a HR manager might not be a priority for your business straight away. A lot of startup leaders, particularly those that want to reduce operational costs and stay agile, manage HR processes themselves to begin with.

How to find really good HR staff and hold on to them! How to find really good HR staff and hold on to them!

What do we want? Great HR staff! When do we want them? Well, in about 1-3 months’ time when they’ve worked out their notice!  OK, it’s not the most rallying cry, but it’s realistic. Excellent HR staff can be like gold dust for your organisation; they’re valuable but can be hard to find. Then, when they’re in your team it’s all about retention since you know that other organisations will likely be after them too. Often recruitment and retention are intertwined, since recruiting the right ‘fit’ for your organisation increases the chance for a long employment. 

How does HR shape company culture? How does HR shape company culture?

How important is company culture? We’d say that it’s pretty crucial. Positive company cultures can increase productivity, reduce staff turnover, and play a huge part in attracting top talent to your organisation. Can you have a strong company culture without an HR department, though? Probably, if you’re a start up or very small organisation. However, the beating heart of a company’s culture comes from HR activities, even if those activities are not undertaken by a dedicated HR professional. This means that as organisations develop (spoiler - that’s every organisation!) they organically build a framework of company culture.