Human resources professionals work a variety of roles
that span the company both horizontally or vertically. There are many
specialties within HR that can include high-level strategic planning,
implementation, and/or day-to-day management of the specialty. Many HR
professionals complete a rotational program following their MBA for exposure
to all of these areas. A skill sets required range from strategic reasoning,
to strong interpersonal skills. In many organizations quantitative skills
are essential for success.
Recruiting and Staffing:
Staffing departments determine marketing strategy and build plans for
recruiting employees possessing key skills set matched to specific positions
and functions within the firm. Technical aspects include observance of
numerous laws, quantitative justification of selection criteria, with an eye
Training and Development:
Work with employees to build skill sets necessary for success within the
company, mapped to corporate goals. Most people in T&D both train employees
themselves and coordinate third-party training programs.
Compensation and Benefits:
Positions vary from planning compensation and benefits offerings for
employees based on strategic objectives and total cost, to working with
suppliers of benefits and the employees that utilize them.
Generalists provide all the functions listed above, typically responsible to
a client group consisting of a department, division or class of employees
within the corporation.
The focus here is on building organizations to support business plans and
strategic initiatives. Typically this is a position attained following
success in the above functions.
Various Other Tracks:
Including HR information systems, safety and ergonomics, and labor relations
(typically dealing with negotiations, not employee relations).
There are consulting equivalents of all of the above HR
functions, ranging from strategic to being a third-party provider of the
Key Words for resume (example)
Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA):
Expanded regulatory compliance programs to incorporate new federal
ADA regulations and
initiated $12 million capital investment program to upgrade facilities to
meet access requirements.
Expanded in-house benefits administration
function to include pension plans, 401(k) plans, tuition reimbursement
programs, LOA programs, and joint spouse maternity leave programs.
Introduced the concepts of career pathing, leadership development,
and succession planning into Federal Express in an effort to increase
executive staff recruitment and retention.
Pioneered innovative change management programs
focused on core productivity, efficiency, and safety improvement
Directed a 12-person claims administration function responsible for
all health insurance, disability, and workers' compensation claims.
Managed a nationwide college recruitment program to attract talented
young engineers and technical designers.
Benchmarked best practices worldwide to create Knudsen's domestic and
international compensation programs.
Created a competency-based performance
analysis and appraisal system to identify top performers and facilitate
progressive career movement.
Pioneered corporate culture change
initiatives impacting more
than 10,000 employees at 54 manufacturing
facilities and 122 sales offices throughout Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
Introduced in-house language training
strengthen staff competencies in
Forged the introduction of diversity management
programs and initiatives to expand hiring, training, and promotion
of minority candidates.
Spearheaded project to implement the
process in the industry, complete
with resume scanning and keyword scanning technology.
produced multimedia employee communications for new hire orientation,
training, and leadership development.
Championed implementation of employee
management programs to increase management/staff
relations and cooperation.
Formed six employee
involvement teams to support HR's efforts in employee downsizing,
employee relations initiatives to include in-house EAP and
Designed performance-based incentives for a 200
person hourly workforce and increased employee retention by better
Wrote, administered, and reported results of
investigating employee satisfaction and
personal career objectives.
Achieved/surpassed all EEO and Affirmative Action regulations.
Spearheaded a worldwide expatriate employment
and human resources function incorporating recruitment, training
and development, succession planning, and compensation.
Administered over 100 grievance proceedings as the direct
intermediary between union and management officials.
Human Resources (HR):
Senior Executive with full operating responsibility
for design, development, and leadership of comprehensive
and organization development function.
Administered all HR generalist affairs, including recruitment,
selection, training, manpower planning,
administration, employee relations, and succession planning.
Forged innovative human resources
operating divisions worldwide to drive common
vision and achieve financial objectives.
functions for sales
and support personnel through ITI's worldwide field organization.
comprehensive international employment
organization responsible for all generalist HR functions and
a complex expatriate compensation program.
Job Task Analysis:
Conducted a sophisticated job task analysis study
to delineate all core
competencies, functions, and requirements of each of
the company's 22 different job classifications.
Negotiated favorable resolutions to several high profile labor
arbitration proceedings negatively impacting Bethlehem Steel's long-term
6-person cross-functional team
responsible for labor contract negotiations with Teamsters officials.
Created a proactive labor relations function that successfully
thwarted several work stoppages and proposed walkouts.
Developed quantifiable tools for leadership assessment of top
Pioneered innovative leadership development programs to accelerate
career advancement of high-potential management candidates.
Management Training &
Identified organizational needs
and created a 4-part
management training and development program.
Created manpower planning methodologies to staff new production
facilities in Iowa and Utah.
Designed a performance-driven merit promotion program to reward top
Partnered with Technology Services Division to create multimedia training
and leadership programs integrating voice, data, and other electronic
Managed a 42-person multinational workforce
with personnel from
Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Japan, Mexico,
and the U.S.
Defined new corporate vision and established
to streamline management
tiers and advance
staff to supervisory positions.
Spearheaded OD initiatives
management, employee empowerment, participative
leadership, and process reengineering.
Conducted worldwide organizational
to define core drivers in fast-paced technology
Energized staff and supervisors to successfully
system based on
pre-established performance criteria.
Designed a complete portfolio of performance incentives
awarded for measurable gains in production yield, quality performance, and
keep pace with rapid market expansion and customer
Designed a corporate-wide position classification
system with associated salary grades, levels, and incentive structures.
Spearheaded an aggressive professional recruitment program to
identify top industry performers in sales, marketing, and international
Administered regulatory affairs, compliance, and reporting with state
and federal agencies governing HR operations.
Designed staff incentives and increased employee retention
better than 45%.
Accelerated the corporation's
commitment to safe work
practices with the
introduction of a plant-wide
Self-Directed Work Teams:
Created self-directed work teams
responsible for full product line management, from initial R&D through manufacturing
and customer delivery.
Redefined staffing levels to assimilate new technologies and reduce
annual payroll expenditures.
Created succession planning models adopted by national association as
best in practices model for the entire industry.
Developed curriculum and instructional
train-the-trainer programs in technology, telecommunications, and electronic commerce.
Planned and launched start-up of worldwide training and development
division to support the company's expansion into emerging product
technologies and markets.
Union Negotiations: Led sensitive union negotiations governing salary and benefit programs for all two million members of the United Auto-workers
Forged positive union relations through cooperative
design of safe work
practices and full compensation for on-the-job injuries.
Wage and Salary
Developed a corporate-wide wage and salary administration
program to ensure equitable compensation across all geographies and job
Led a massive
workforce reengineering initiative to reduce Terminal's worldwide
staff by 30% by the end of 1999.
Questions for Human Resource
1. Tell me why you chose Human Resource Management as your profession.
2. Do you have a personal philosophy about HR management?
3. What do you like most about HR? What do you like least, and what do you
find the most challenging?
4. During your experience of working in HR (if you had one), to which
positions have you reported and which reporting structure do you prefer?
5. How do you stay current with changes in employment laws, practices and
other HR issues?
6. An employee tells you about a sexual harassment allegation but then tells
you they don't want to do anything about it; they just thought you should
know. How do you respond?
7. Describe the most difficult employee relations situation you have had to
handle, how it was resolved or not, and why.
8. What would you do to help your prospective human resources department to
become a strategic partner?
9. As HR professionals, we often deal with legal and ethical situations.
Tell me about an ethical situation you have encountered and what part you
took in resolving it. Tell me about any illegal discrimination charges you
have handled and how these were resolved.
10. Tell me about your policy development experiences. What employment
policies have you developed or revised?
11. Describe your knowledge of/involvement with progressive discipline.
12. Describe your knowledge of/involvement with Performance Evaluation
13. Tell me about your experience in training and developing your employees
14. Tell me about training and development programs you have developed.
15. Have you ever worked in a Union Environment? What were the
16. Imagine that a manager wants you as an HR professional to terminate an
employee contract in contrast to your company's termination policy. How
would you resolve this?
17. Describe to me in a few sentences the purpose of the following basic
Federal regulations: (select one or more, as applicable) Title VII/Civil
Rights Act, FLSA, WC, FMLA, ADA
1. How much recruiting experience do you have? What type of positions have
you recruited for in the past?
2. Discuss why you feel that Human Resources/Recruiting is the right
profession for you.
3. List your experience with and/or knowledge of Affirmative Action Planning
and Applicant Flow reporting.
4. What recruiting tool do you consider to be most valuable to you? Explain.
5. What do you consider to be your greatest talent as it relates to
6. What do you consider to be the most challenging aspect of corporate
7. Can you work extended hours when needed?
8. What is the most unique or non-traditional recruiting approach you have
tried? Was it successful? Why or why not?
9. Are you familiar with full cycle recruiting?
10. How do you develop relationships with line managers?
11. Have you ever developed a staffing plan?
12. Tell me about your internal posting process.
13. If you were to fulfil diversity initiatives at you company tell me about
staffing efforts that you would undertake?
14. Are you familiar with e-recruiting? Tell me about your success utilizing
1. Provide me with an overview of employee benefit enrollment process at
your previous organization. What duties were you responsible for within this
2. How did/would you communicate benefit updates to employees?
3. Tell me about a time when you had to present a benefit program to a group
of employees to win their buy-in. What was the outcome?
4. What was a compensation philosophy at your previous organization?
5. Describe your previous organization's salary administration process. In
what ways was it effective? Ineffective?
6. What is your knowledge of/experience with variable compensation?