13 Important HR Manager Roles (With Job Duties and Tips)

Indeed Editorial Team

Updated 2 March 2023

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

A human resources manager handles many duties and roles in their position. They provide guidance and direction to specialists while monitoring and organising the human resources department. If you are interested in becoming an HR manager, learning more about what they do can help you prepare. In this article, we review 13 HR manager roles, answer frequently asked questions and provide helpful tips for finding a job in human resources management.

Related: Human Resource Planning: Meaning, Importance and Key Steps

13 HR manager roles

These are some roles and responsibilities that human resources managers handle in their position:

1. Hiring and recruitment

One of a human resources manager's primary roles is locating and hiring new talent for their company. This process can include locating talent through online sources, recruitment agencies and physical ads. After locating potential hires, the HR manager may screen resumes and read cover letters to determine which candidates are most viable. They then interview or delegate interviews to other human resources specialists to gather more information about the candidates. At the end of the hiring process, the manager collaborates with other professionals to develop compensation and benefits packages that can influence talented individuals to accept employment offers.

Related: What Does An HR Recruiter Do? (Plus How To Become One)

2. Creating job description and design

Job description and design is the process of determining which professional roles are necessary for a team or department and defining those roles. To develop cohesive and efficient teams of professionals, the HR manager determines the skills, qualifications and education for each person, along with what their responsibilities include. During this process, the HR manager may consider the leadership structure and how the team can collaborate to produce quality work and value for the company. For example, the human resources manager may determine that a department functions best with several teams, each of which contains a team leader.

Related: Why Is Human Resources Important to Every Organisation?

3. Planning and schedules

Another role that HR managers manage is planning for company events and creating schedules. Depending on the size of the company, the nature of the work and how many employees there are in each department, the HR manager may determine when each staff member works, or they may delegate that task to other leaders within the company. If hours are consistent or the company primarily employs salaried individuals, the HR manager may not design a weekly schedule but plan for company holidays and inform staff members about their time off from work.

4. Onboarding and training

Onboarding is preparing a new hire for integration into the company atmosphere and workflow. HR managers prepare and plan for onboarding, either creating the material themselves or overseeing the process. Training is important for new employees, as it ensures they understand policies and procedures within the organisation. HR managers can prepare documents, schedule training sessions and determine what each new hire learns during their onboarding and training. Effective onboarding and training can ready employees and help them reach peak production faster, which provides the company with more value.

5. Documenting rules and regulations

HR managers create documentation for rules and regulations, communicate this important information to employees and create procedures for training employees on these policies. An HR manager may work with other professionals to create an employee handbook and ensure each employee receives and signs a copy before beginning work with the company. They may also update and improve rules and regulations as the company grows and develops. For example, an HR manager may create or oversee the creation of activities involving regulation review and the production of new materials.

6. Performance management

Performance management allows companies and teams to ensure each of their staff members is producing value for the company that equals their compensation. To use performance management, the HR manager may implement systems for monitoring productivity, suggesting solutions for issues and offering potential improvements in workflow. The HR manager may gather employee feedback on how to improve performance and use incentives and other methods for increasing productivity. For example, an HR manager may design a reward system for the highest performing staff member each month or quarter.

7. Developing workplace atmosphere

HR managers understand that developing a welcoming and conducive workplace atmosphere is important for improving productivity, employee satisfaction and staff engagement levels. To do this, they may collaborate with designers to create more open and inspiring layouts for rooms, offer refreshments and improve communication within the workplace. For example, they may promote an open layout and plan events for team members to get to know one another and develop professional relationships. The HR manager may also focus on diversity and inclusion to create an effective workplace atmosphere.

8. Conflict resolution

Conflict resolution is necessary when employees have disputes and disagreements. The HR manager can develop a standard procedure for settling problems and providing conflict resolution. They may also supervise HR specialists as they meet with staff members to solve disputes, acting as mediators during discussions. HR managers ensure their department responds quickly to conflict and supports the rights of the employees.

Related: HR Interview Questions: Examples and Answers

9. Ensuring employee health and safety

HR managers support employee health and safety by assessing potential risks and supplying staff members with protection, depending on the organisation and industry. The manager may take action to address potential risks by reducing or eliminating them. To promote health among team members, HR managers may arrange health goals and benefits like gym memberships, relays or friendly competitions.

10. Positive reinforcement

An HR manager affects positive reinforcement by working directly with staff members and advising their leaders. Positive reinforcement is the act of providing a reward when a staff member shows good behaviour or contributes to excellent work. To do this, HR managers can use employee of the month awards, supply positive verbal feedback or give small rewards like gift cards or meals to employees.

11. Recording and reporting

Successful HR managers record and report the performance of their department, metrics for staff productivity and satisfaction, risk analysis and accidents or incidents. Recording and reporting is an important part of the HR manager's position, as it allows them to protect themselves and the company in sensitive situations by documenting meetings and incidents. Tracking performance metrics is also important for HR managers because they can use them to assess their team and develop goals for improvement.

12. Specialist management

HR managers provide guidance and direction to the specialists within their department. This can vary depending on the size of the company, but HR managers may lead a team of HR specialists to complete daily HR tasks. Their management role means HR managers must have excellent leadership abilities, along with a thorough understanding of human resources topics.

13. Managing compensation and benefits

Compensation and benefits is a subject that HR managers thoroughly understand, and creating the best compensation and benefits packages for employees can increase retention and bring more value to the company. Compensation refers to the salary or wage that a staff member earns, and benefits are additional perks like health insurance, educational assistance and others. HR managers must assess an employee's value and create a package that attracts and keeps top talent with their company.

Related: How To Become an HR Manager (Duties, Salary and Skills)

HR manager FAQ

These are the answers to frequently asked human resource management questions:

What is the crucial role of an HR manager?

The crucial role of an HR manager is to provide guidance and direction to HR specialists while completing management tasks. Creating and maintaining a human resources team that functions efficiently is part of their primary purpose. An effective human resources team can best support staff members and provide value to the company.

What are the seven functions of HR?

Though each human resources department is different and may approach more or less than seven functions, there are seven general objectives for HR teams. The seven objectives are recruitment, performance, learning, succession, compensation, information and analytics. Different HR departments may choose to add other functions or delegate some to other teams or departments.

What are the benefits of working in human resources?

Human resources provide support and protection for staff within a company. If you are kind, empathetic and prioritise integrity, working in HR may be an excellent career choice. The benefits of working in human resources include influencing workplace culture, helping people and finding job security.

Related: The Functions and Departments of HR: A Complete Guide

Tips for finding a job in human resources management

You can use these helpful tips to find a job in human resources management:

  • Complete HR internships: Completing an internship can give you ample experience and allow you to develop the necessary skills for becoming a human resources manager.

  • Create an effective resume: Effective resumes highlight your key strengths and show your relevant experience. Creating a resume that considers the job listing and includes keywords can help you get a job in HR.

  • Get a relevant degree: Most companies require their HR managers to have at least a bachelor's degree, but a master's degree in human resources may be more likely to help you find a suitable position.

  • Dedicate time to volunteering: Human resources positions are about helping people, and by volunteering you can build connections and show that you care about others. Including volunteering on your resume can show the employer that you are invested in providing support to others.

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