Duties and responsibilities
The overall responsibilities of a human resources (HR) assistant is to handle the daily administrative and HR duties of an organization. They tend to assist the HR manager with record maintenance and payroll processing. Typical duties of a HR assistant include:
- Maintaining all digital and electronic records of the HR team to the highest standard
- Managing and maintaining the calendars of the HR management team
- Coordinating training sessions, meetings and performance appraisals
- Completing employee termination paperwork and exit interviews
- Processing payroll and resolving any payroll errors
- Assisting with the recruitment process by identifying candidates, performing reference checks and issuing employment contracts
To become a HR assistant, the most common route is to achieve a bachelor’s degree in human resources, psychology, business or a similar field (e.g., education or a social science). Most employers will also look for candidates who have experience working in a HR team, or in a similar role (customer service, employee relations or payroll administration).
Skills and relevant work experience
- Attention to detail is an essential skill for a HR assistant as they work with data and documents, which must be processed and documented with complete accuracy
- Communication skills are key for HR assistant as they have to communicate, both verbally and in writing, ideas and information to other employees and other HR team members in a way that they can interpret and understand
- Teamwork skills are important to be a successful HR assistant as they work as a crucial part of the HR team and work closely with others team members to achieve common goals
- Organizational skills are key for HR assistants as they must help HR managers with many different functions (e.g., recruitment, training, performance appraisals) in an organized and timely manner in order to meet deadlines
- Technology skills are important as HR assistants will have to work with a wide range of software and computer applications
More often than not, HR assistants tend to work full time (around 40 hours per week). However, there are also part time HR assistant roles available in smaller companies or companies that hire more than one HR assistant.
The Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS) has not documented the average salary for a HR assistant. However, according to PayScale, the median annual salary for a human resources assistant in the United States is $41,ooo. The lowest 10% earned less than $31,000 and the top 10% earned more than $55,000.
The Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS) has not predicted the employment growth of HR assistants specifically. However, the employment of HR managers is projected to grow 7% from 2018 to 2028, faster than the average for all occupations. As HR assistants work to aid the work of HR managers, it is reasonable to assume that the employment rate for HR assistants will be similar.
The growth of the industry depends greatly on the performance and growth of companies because as companies form or expand, they will need more HR managers to oversee this process and more HR assistants to aid the work of the HR managers.
HR assistants tend to have progressed from other roles, such as a HR administrator or staffing coordinator. Most do not stay in a HR assistant role, they tend to naturally progress to HR generalist, HR supervisor or HR manager.