Series 1: To be a Human (Resource) or not?

Are you at the crossroads in your career or education wondering whether to consider Human Resources (commonly referred to as HR) as your first or next career? Have you wondered what working in or studying HR would be like in this and next generation?

In this three part series, you will find out about:

  1. what HR courses commonly don’t offer;
  2. what is exciting about HR as a career now and in future;
  3. why HR is really only about PEOPLE but technology and process play a very exciting role in this career.

Series 1: What university HR Courses commonly don’t offer?


I want to begin this series by acknowledging that I haven’t been studying at a university since 2009. However, I have kept in touch with students pursuing HR degrees in order to keep up to date with the latest trends and courses offered by universities. This has led me to formulate five key things universities currently DON’T offer.

  1. HR (Technology) consulting, which is a common career path, is currently NOT offered as part of any degrees. Technology plays a pivotal role in empowering people managers with information that helps them to attract and retain the best people. Yet, it is not offered as a course. There will be more about HR Technology careers in Series 3. I encourage you to wait for it.
  2. Commercial acumen, which is a common skill that most HR professionals lack, is currently NOT offered as part of any degrees. A lot is written about HR not having a seat at the table. This is all about understanding and being able to associate HR with a value proposition.
  3. Ability to sell, which is a common skill associated with people in Sales and Marketing, but ALL (Recruitment and HR) professionals need this skill. No HR degree offers a subject in selling techniques. Recruitment professionals are tasked with hiring, and HR professionals are tasked with training, or managing people from diverse fields including those in finance, sales, etc. This involves understanding the business of your organisation and then learning how to sell it to people.
  4. Collaboration knowledge and skills, which is what all workplaces now actively promote or aim to achieve, again not commonly offered in HR degrees. This ensures that HR professionals are able to communicate and collaborate with both internal and external parties successfully to meet business objectives of attracting and retaining the best talent.
  5. Process engineering, which is traditionally what all HR departments need to know in order to create effective people processes, but sadly again not offered by any HR degrees.

If you want to know more about what universities DO offer, it is really easy, just Google HR degrees and you will get a long list of responses. If you have any questions or comments about this article, please do get in touch with or tweet to hrtechgirl. For more insights into HR Technology, check out  Juhi King’s blog

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