Firms demand quality not quantity of HR staff

HR professionals have received inflation-busting pay rises, but there are
fewer positions available to them.

A survey of almost 4,000 companies shows that HR directors now earn an
average of £60,000, representing a year-on-year increase of 9 per cent.

The findings of the poll by Hays HR Personnel shows a sliding scale of
seniority for pay rises over the last year, with HR managers getting 6.2 per
cent, HR officers 4.5 per cent and HR administrators 3.1 per cent.

Employers in London, the South East and Scotland offer the best pay for HR
staff, the research shows.

Managing director of Hays, Lynne Hardman, said: "HR salaries have
increased across the board – in many cases significantly. Extensive
restructuring by companies has led to a large number of mergers and
acquisitions – both of which need the skills of specialist HR

Hardman said the survey also shows the number of vacancies has fallen and,
with increased salaries, employers expect more for their money.

The survey finds that HR professionals are expected to have expertise in
more strategic areas such as change management and organisational development
as well as traditional areas such as recruitment and personnel.

"HR is emerging as a profession that is active in good times and bad.
However, the number of positions available is down, which means companies can
afford to be choosier," added Hardman.

She said that the range of work expected of HR has led to generalists having
a more favourable position in the jobs market.

Compensation and benefits specialists and employment law advisers are also
enjoying a healthy demand as staff retention and legislation become
increasingly important.

By Ross Wigham

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