HR is one of the most in-demand and fastest-growing careers today, it’s also going through a lot of change and developments with more specialist areas than before.

If you’re an ambitious, driven HR professional who’s keen to progress in their career, sometimes ambition alone is not enough.

Whether you want to become more visible in your organisation, secure a promotion or gain leadership experience, there are many proactive ways you can advance your HR career and hone your skills for the future.

Skills Needed for The Future of HR

Continuous Learning and Higher Education

As with any career, one of the best ways to advance a career in human resources is through learning. This doesn’t necessarily mean going back to college, though those who have just a bachelor’s degree will find that earning a master’s degree is helpful along with a CIPD qualification.

Other ways to keep learning include working with people from different backgrounds, reading books written by industry leaders and seeking out blogs and websites by HR experts that cover current trends in the HR field.

Integrity & Discretion

Handling confidential information like salaries, medical information and personal issues is a regular part of many HR roles.

Integrity and confidentiality are key when handling sensitive information like this amongst employees. Not only do you need to act correctly, but you also need others to have the confidence in you to do so.

Effective Communication

The range of communication that HR people need to do is vast. You need to speak with authority to CEOs and senior management, and with confidence and reassurance to other employees.

You may also need to be able to showcase the company to potential candidates and recruitment agencies both in writing and in person, both to large groups and individuals.

If you struggle with communication, remember that preparation is often the key – by knowing the key message you need to communicate, you will find you can get your message through more successfully.

Strategic-thinking skills

The ability to think strategically and use that skill to successfully grow and help lead the company is important in HR.

They must know the strategic needs of the company, in all departments and at all levels, and must have the skills to look for and retain people that meet those needs and gain a competitive edge through their current and incoming employees.

An Openness to Change

The unknown can bring up feelings of uncertainty and anxiety. One of the largest responsibilities of HR is guiding employees through moments of change.

Many of you will have experienced this during the current pandemic of Covid19 at scale, be that working remotely, redundancies or implementing the Work Subsidy scheme for staff.

When done right, change management can relieve uncertainty, reduce negative impacts and engage a workforce. However, you first need to be prepared and open to change in your own role.

Openness through your communication and attitude will help ready you and those around you for what the future has to offer.

The HR industry is changing, with many reports of automation and powerful HR AI tools. The above range of soft skills can never be replaced by AI or automation and are vital to perfect to advance your HR career and remain relevant.

If you have any queries re HR roles or hiring HR professionals please do not hesitate to contact me on Amy.Lawson@Cpl.ie or 0858720940 for any further direction or advice.