You have to be smart to work in human resources. You won’t hear this from anyone outside of HR, but it’s the truth. HR professionals balance all sorts of responsibilities, from administering compensation and benefits to settling disputes between employees to organizing weekly, monthly, and annual events. It’s a tough gig, and it takes diligence and intelligence to pull off.
Therefore, to advance in HR, you need to be even more diligent and intelligent than your HR peers – which means you need to be better educated than they are. Advanced degrees are known to help the ambitious speed up the corporate ladder, and that’s true in HR, too. The following four degrees are incredibly different from one another, but that’s exactly why they are perfect for those interested in being better at HR.
1. Master in Human Resources Management
It shouldn’t be surprising that studying human resources is good for those seeking jobs in human resources. A master’s degree in Human Resources Management targets the field of HR, imbuing students with highly focused knowledge and skills that are exceedingly useful to HR careers. Professionals equipped with the MHRM can typically skip the years of entry-level employment and begin as HR managers, opening up access to better career prospects in the near future.
The only potential downside to an MHRM is the restriction of its material. Students who acquire this advanced degree should be committed to working within HR for their lifetimes, as the information and abilities gained therein hardly apply to other business departments. Fortunately, every business sector requires HR professionals, so graduates with this degree do have some ability to move in their HR careers – though perhaps not as much as grads from the following advanced programs.
2. Master in Business Administration
Arguably the three most familiar letters in business, the MBA is a highly contentious degree program. On one hand, it provides students with essential business leadership skills as well as a foundation in several business fields, including HR. On the other hand, so many schools are producing MBAs every year that employers are beginning to wonder whether that extra education is worthwhile to the workforce.
The truth is MBAs continue to be valuable to businesses – especially in the HR department. The necessity for HR professionals to boast a bevy of skills makes the broad scope of the MBA useful; HR workers can learn the details of all business functions, from accounting to marketing, improving their ability to hire specialized workers and communicate with those teams. Plus, acquiring an AACSB online MBA will give you more flexibility in your career, so you can leave HR for nearly any other business field, if you so desire.
3. Master in Computer Science
Human resources professionals work primarily with people, and secondarily with numbers – so it seems odd that a degree in computer science might be useful to HR. However, like nearly every other business field, HR processes have begun relying heavily on tech, so being proficient in computer science is actually a significant boon to HR workers. With an MS in Computer Science, HR professionals can design and maintain useful programs for HR and other business departments, which can speed up processes, relieve overburdened teams, and help the business become more productive overall. Additionally, it’s conceivable that a tech-savvy HR manager would be promoted into positions like Chief Technology Officer. Thus, computer science isn’t a totally wild advanced degree for HR professionals to obtain.
4. Master in Social Work
Then again, if you entered the HR field for its promise of human contact, you might be drawn to an advanced degree in social work. A Master of Social Work is mandatory for any social work positions, but it is also exceedingly beneficial for professionals looking to become proficient in working with people. Courses on psychology and sociology as well as administrative training provide an unbeatable foundation for assisting people work through issues and reestablish stability. Even better, social work programs teach students about important laws and regulations, which will improve your ability to maintain standards for your employer. Because social work and the HR field overlap in so many ways, this degree program can be just as beneficial as an MHRM.
Whether you would be content with a management position or you want access to the C-suite, you should probably earn an advanced degree to move up in HR. The above programs offer the most applicable knowledge and skills, but you can explore other options by contacting business schools or speaking with a qualified HR mentor.
About the Author:
Tiffany Rowe is a leader in marketing authority, she assists Seek Visibility and our clients in contributing resourceful content throughout the web. Tiffany prides herself in her ability to create and provide high quality content that audiences find valuable. She also enjoys connecting with other bloggers and collaborating for exclusive content in various niches. With many years of experience, Tiffany has found herself more passionate than ever to continue developing content and relationship across multiple platforms and audiences.