HR’s Job Confidence

The latest SHRM HR Jobs Pulse, a survey report focused on hiring trends in HR, shows a profession growing increasingly confident – with those just beginning their climb up the career ladder particularly optimistic about their job security and job prospects.

The survey asks U.S.-based HR professionals about hiring for HR jobs at their organizations and their own job seeking plans, sense of job security and confidence in their ability to find new job opportunities.

The 2016 findings indicate that fewer HR professionals are looking for new work compared with a year ago.  In addition, fewer respondents in the 2016 survey said they were worried about the stability of their jobs compared with previous surveys.

Overall, 25% of respondents had some degree of concern with job security (22% were “somewhat concerned,” and 3% were “very concerned”), down two percentage points from 2015 and a decline of 14 percentage points from 2014. Early career level HR professionals had the least combined degree of concern about their job security (16%), and mid-career level and senior HR workers had the highest level (27% each) of concern with job security. However, the vast majority of HR professionals (88%) had at least some level of confidence that they could land a new position if they needed to find a new role.

Of those who are hiring for HR jobs, roles for HR generalists continue to be in the highest demand (49%).  Many organizations are currently experiencing recruiting challenges for key jobs and this is no doubt a factor driving the almost one-third (31%) of companies who report they are seeking out HR professionals for recruitment-focused roles.  Fifteen percent of organizations indicate that they are adding HR administrative positions, followed by HR jobs specializing in benefits (14%), employee relations (13%), compensation (9%), training/development positions (also 9%), and organizational development (8%).

Pay is the key driver among HR professionals who are seeking out new positions. More than two out of five of those surveyed (42%) who said they were looking or planned to look for a new job said “more compensation/pay” was the reason. This was followed by “better career advancement opportunities” (37%).

However, most HR professionals plan to stay in their current positions.  The top reason they are staying put is the “flexibility to balance work and life issues” (41%), followed by “positive relationships with colleagues/co-workers” (38%) and “compensation/pay” (33%).

The overall positive outlook reflects the resiliency of the overall U.S. job market as well as positive trends within the HR profession itself.  Especially at the management job level, the job outlook for HR professionals in the coming decade is good; the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics forecasts that employment of human resources managers will grow 9 percent from 2014 to 2024, faster than the average for all occupations.


For the full report findings go to:



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