The Many Disciplines of Human Resources

Learn more about human resource management degreesHuman resources is a complicated field. Those who  haven't studied or worked in the industry may think it is simply about the management of  people in an organization. While this assumption is true, the HR industry encompasses much more.

Large organizations usually have multiple HR specialists within specific disciplines, but smaller organizations rely on their HR manager to be knowledgeable in all areas. Some of the many disciplines of HR management include:

With the evolution of HR disciplines, trends and legislation, staying current in the field is critical.
  • Workforce/Succession Planning: HR works with the organization to determine what the current workforce looks like and which positions are likely to open up due to company growth, retirements or performance problems. HR also helps the organization determine which employees are ready for promotion and are ready to fill open positions.
  • Staffing: HR works with hiring managers to develop job descriptions, post job openings, interview candidates and hire the best talent available. Bringing the right people into the organization is an extremely critical task.  After hiring, HR specialists work to onboard new employees. How people are welcomed into an organization and how they learn about the culture is key to employee engagement and retention.
  • Compensation/Benefits: HR determines pay ranges and places employees into the appropriate salary grade while monitoring internal equity and revising ranges based on market analysis. They also work with benefit brokers to provide the best employee benefits package available as well as monitors benefits based on use and costs.
  • Labor/Employee Relations: HR works with labor unions, when applicable, to ensure contracts are as beneficial as possible to the organization and the workforce. If not unionized, HR handles employee issues, assists in conflict resolution and monitors issues that might arise and cause organizational discrepancies.
  • Performance Management: HR works with managers to provide performance feedback to employees as well as develops and monitors the disciplinary procedures and participates in termination decisions.
  • Compliance: HR keeps the organization in compliance with all federal, state and local laws and regulations including FLSA, FMLA, ADA, OSHA, EEOC and much more.
  • Learning and Development: HR analyzes the development needs of the workforce and creates learning opportunities for employees. HR works with universities and other organizations to present learning opportunities that meet the needs of the workforce to increase employee productivity.

With the evolution of HR disciplines, trends and legislation, staying current in the field is critical. Stay on top of the HR industry through education. Columbia Southern University has certificate,  undergraduate and graduate programs in HR Management.