What You Should Know About This Degree
The human resources department often acts as a go-between for a company’s bureaucracy and its employees. Interacting with various constituencies within an organization is a key function of HR employees, so communication, interpersonal, and collaboration skills are essential to success in human resources.
While most human resources positions are office-based, those focused on recruitment may require extensive travel for job fairs, college campuses, and off-site interviews. Consider if this is something you are willing or able to do, as it may affect your prospects once you enter the job market. Additionally, since more companies are now outsourcing HR tasks to outside firms, you may end up working with multiple companies as an outside consultant, rather than being housed within a specific organization.
There are a number of voluntary professional certifications in HR, and employers are increasingly seeking employees with these certifications. The Society for Human Resource Management offers an accelerated certification pathway for students enrolled in SHRM-aligned master’s programs. Graduates of non-aligned programs can obtain certification, but attending an aligned program can expedite the process. Earning and maintaining certifications is an additional commitment of time, money, and energy, so it’s important to be prepared for this aspect of your HR career.
Here are some questions to ask when researching MBA in Human Resources programs:
- Are standardized test scores required for admission? Many MBA programs require that students submit GMAT or GRE scores as part of the application process, although some schools may waive the requirement based on undergraduate GPA, professional experience, or other factors. Find out if test scores are part of the admissions process so that you can make arrangements to take these exams if you have not already done so.
- Am I eligible for this program? Because an MBA is an advanced degree, some programs may seek applicants who have relevant educational or work experience. When researching programs, be sure to look at their admissions requirements to confirm that you have the necessary qualifications to be considered for admission.
Once you narrow down the list of programs that interest you, research their application deadlines and begin gathering your application materials. This information is usually available on the school’s website, or you can contact their admissions department if you have questions.
Financing your graduate education is another important consideration. In addition to applying for scholarships and financial aid, check with your employer to see if they offer any kind of tuition remission or reimbursement for advancing your education.