An employee relations representative negotiates employee contracts and represents employees regarding issues such as benefits and workplace practices. These professionals need a bachelor's degree in labor relations or human resources, as well as an understanding of the personnel procedures, federal labor laws and state labor laws.
Employee relations representatives work in human resources departments for public and private companies, as well as government agencies. These professionals ensure the welfare of their coworkers. Most employee relations representatives have completed a bachelor's program.
|Required Education||Bachelor's degree|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)*||8% decline for all labor relations specialists|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$58,820 for all labor relations specialists|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Employee relations representatives often assist in negotiating labor relations. This may entail dealing with wages, pensions, and benefits complaints, in addition to other practices in the workplace. For this reason, employee relations representatives might work with union representatives, if such individuals exist within the organization.
Employee relations representatives also must be familiar with personnel rules and practices. They need to understand state and federal labor laws, as well as any rules that are specific to their employer. Employee relations representatives also might ensure that accommodations are in place for workers who have disabilities or who engage in certain religious practices.
If working for an international company, an employee relations representative may help deal with cultural issues. It is the employee relations representative's job to keep such misunderstandings from happening, or to ameliorate the situation if they do.
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Training for Employee Relations Representatives
Employee relations representatives are typically college graduates. Students might consider majoring in human resources, labor relations, or a related field. Programs may explore topics in workplace regulations and employee compensation. They also might require students to complete internships, documenting their experience and submitting a formal paper for a grade.
Job Outlook for Employee Relations Representatives
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), opportunities for labor relations specialists were expected to decline by 8% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). The decline is due to the fact that fewer employees are represented by unions. The BLS indicated that college graduates with degrees in human resources, labor relations, or a closely related field should have the best job opportunities. The median annual salary earned by labor relations specialists in May 2015 was published as $58,820 by the BLS.
Employee relations representatives address issues on behalf of employees. These issues can range from accommodations for religious practices to negotiating for benefits from the employer. Employee relations representatives usually have a bachelor's degree in labor relations, human resources or a related subject area to prepare to perform the duties associated with this job.