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Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS) Career Information

Human resources information systems careers require significant formal education. Learn about the education, job duties and certification to see if this is the right career for you.

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Human resources are the workforce employed by a company or organization. While human resources specialists have long been an important part of functioning institutions, technological advances have changed the nature of their work. This article introduces the new format for human resource positions with an emphasis on information systems.

Essential Information

Many human resources (HR) departments in large organizations have streamlined their information gathering and record keeping in recent years by computerizing records. Individuals who work with these computer systems are called human resources information systems (HRIS) specialists. They usually have a bachelor's degree in human resources management, business, information technology or a related field, and they may hold voluntary certification. Minimum qualifications can vary by specific job title or employer.

Required Education Bachelor's degree
Other Requirements Voluntary certification, related work experience
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 5% for human resources specialists
Median Annual Salary (2015)* $58,350 for human resources specialists

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Human Resources Career Overview

Most people employed in human resources work in office environments. In general, HR departments deal with employee issues, such as hiring, compensation, benefits and complaints. Small organizations often employ only a few individuals who handle all the tasks of a human resources department, including working with a Human Resources Information System (HRIS). Larger organizations typically employ human resources directors who oversee others with more specific tasks, such as human resources information systems specialists.

HRIS Specialists Job Information

These employees work with computer systems to keep track of employee records, as well as cataloging individuals who are searching for jobs. They may develop Intranets or online employee databases, in addition to providing hardware and software support. HRIS specialists also may be charged with developing software to fit the specific needs of a company or buying an HRIS for an organization.

HRIS specialists must be good at troubleshooting in addition to explaining HRIS programs to other employees, many of whom may be operating the same software applications from the user end. Since these specialists are highly skilled, they may be required to travel to various locations to teach others.

Education for HRIS Specialists

Individuals with a college degree have the best opportunity to get into the human resources field. Aspiring HRIS specialists might benefit from an associate's or bachelor's degree program in a variety of majors, including human resources management, personnel management, business administration, information systems or computer science. Voluntary professional certifications are available, usually through professional HR associations.

Job Outlook and Salary Info

Human resources specialists were expected to see an increase of about 5% in job opportunities in the decade spanning 2014-2024, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As of May 2015, the BLS reported that these specialists made a median annual salary of $58,350.

Human resource specialists now make use of information systems to hire workers and document employees' compensation and benefits. Larger businesses may hire human resource information specialists, whose job it is to navigate databases of current and prospective employee information. Although job growth is predicted to be slow in this field, job prospects are expected to be good, especially for applicants holding a bachelor's degree and professional certification.

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