What you need to succeed… You are likely to be a graduate with a first degree – either in HR or in a management, psychology or business-related discipline. You may be a recent graduate, or have previous experience either in a general administrative role or in HR.
You will need to have strong administration skills, including familiarity with Microsoft Office. You will need to maintain a high level of confidentiality, and will possess excellent interpersonal, communication and customer-facing skills, plus the flexibility and a willingness to learn.
How to get into it… HR can be a difficult field to break into, particularly if you are applying straight from university. Look for interim opportunities (including maternity cover) to build up prior experience. This will greatly increase your chances.
What is involved… This role is a mixture of admin and HR, and the proportions of each will vary according to organisation, department and individual employee. Many organisations will encourage and enhance the HR aspect of the role for a high-calibre, committed HR administrator, so it can be possible to contribute positively to your own career development. You will be expected to undertake some or all of the following:
- Be the first point of contact for all HR-related queries.
- Administer HR-related documentation, such as offer letters, contracts of employment, leavers’ information, and pensions information.
- Ensure the relevant HR database is up to date and accurate and complies with relevant legislation.
- Assist in the recruitment process – liaising with agencies, setting up interviews and issuing correspondence.
Prospects… Good for progression up the HR hierarchy into senior HR assistant and officer/adviser roles. HR is also a good platform for learning about the business and moving beyond HR into other departments.