How an MBA Prepares Graduates for Modern HR Leadership
Human resource departments have undergone many changes in recent years. It’s a trend that is expected to continue for the foreseeable future. Once primarily considered as a support service for business operations, HR leaders now take a more active role in achieving business goals through strategic management of human capital. An MBA with a concentration in HR leadership helps prepare individuals for modern HR departments in forward-thinking companies. Understanding the complexities of HR management remains key to the job. However, business skills have become increasingly important.
MBA Provides Right Mix of Skills
Earning an MBA with a concentration in human resources management provides graduates with a step up on the competition. To understand why, it’s important to understand how HR has evolved.
HR departments in the past essentially managed the paperwork around recruiting and hiring new employees. They also oversaw employee benefits. In some organizations, HR also developed training programs to bolster employee skills in specific areas. All this still applies to most HR departments, as does expertise in the laws and regulations applicable to HR.
However, a shift has taken place in recent years. HR managers now often serve as business partners, working with the leaders of specific business units. Together, they map out a strategy for employee recruitment and retention. Aligning it with the department’s business goals.
An MBA with a focus on human resources management prepares graduates to work in this capacity. A sound understanding of both business and HR uniquely prepares them for this vital, relatively new role.
Other Advantages of an MBA
There are other, related areas where an MBA can prove beneficial to the right kind of student. Keep in mind that those who enter these types of programs need to have a keen interest in the latest innovations in managing human capital in the most effective way to benefit an organization.
Strategic HR management.
To work effectively as a business partner, HR managers need to understand how HR practices directly impact business performance. This includes issues such as the use of core workforces, outsourcing work, staffing for quality, evaluating performance of HR policies and managing the careers of standout employees.
Speaking of standout employees, HR managers need expertise in strategies, tools and techniques to both attract and retain talented employees. Retention is especially key in the current market, where low unemployment has led to fierce competition over the most qualified employees.
An understanding of how to leverage data to make improved business decisions is key in almost every leadership position, including HR. Data analytics can lead to better decisions on managing employees. That includes the use of predictive analytics to make HR choices that better serve company goals – such as determining what type of resumes or job experience in the past led to a high percentage chance of success for certain employees.
Managing a global workforce.
Many companies now have operations that circle the planet. HR managers need to understand how policies impact a global operation, the regulations that govern workforces in locations outside the U.S. and strategies for managing a global workforce.
All these areas are covered in quality MBA programs with a concentration in HR. For ambitious students who want leadership positions in modern HR departments, entering such a degree program is an option worth considering.
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