Human Resources FAQs

HR is at the heart of every organization. Help the people at your company grow and thrive with an education that makes a difference at UMass Global.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re considering going back to school for a HR degree, you've come to the right place. Browse through these FAQs to explore the right path for your career and find a UMass Global program that helps you achieve your goals.

  • Human resources, or HR, is the department within an organization that helps manage the people who make the business possible. They may work with leaders and individuals to ensure staffing needs are met, workers are satisfied and track efficiencies of their contributions across the company.
  • HR serves the interests of employees and employers alike. While these professionals work to ensure the organization is staffed appropriately and running smoothly, they also contribute to and measure the happiness of its workers. After all, a business is only as successful as its people.
  • Depending on the size of the company, an HR professional might be involved in one or several of the following activities:

    1. Recruiting, hiring and retaining talent
    2. Employee engagement
    3. Performance management
    4. Compensation and benefits
    5. Development and training
    6. Risk management
    7. Audits and legal compliance


  • HR is critical for all businesses, regardless of their size. It provides the building blocks for success by maintaining culture, business communications, staffing efficiencies and ensuring the organization is following regulatory requirements for a positive work environment.
  • To enter this field, you can complete your bachelor's degree in HR or even a related field like finance, management, education or information technology. Once achieved, you may want to look into master’s or certification for professional development to gain a competitive edge. Find your program at UMass Global.
  • Ideally, you’ll want to earn a bachelor’s degree in human resources or a related field first. Some higher-level positions may require a master’s degree. The next step is to acquire work experience, then finally you may want to consider pursing an industry certification to gain a competitive advantage. Read more.
  • Generally speaking, HR managers are responsible for all functions that deal with the needs and activities of an organization’s people. They do everything from recruiting employees and negotiating salaries to developing the organization’s culture and creating policy recommendations. Find out more about how to become a human resources manager.
  • Creating a positive work environment involves many factors, but they all wrap up into creating a positive culture. Expert tips include:

    1. Identify your organization’s core values
    2. Establish trust by representing those values
    3. Maintain clear and consistent expectations
    4. Ensure your employees feel valued

    Find out more.

  • Professional development provides employees with opportunities to maintain and obtain the skills required for their current jobs, as well as next steps in their careers. Although it has many benefits, the primary importance is to minimize turnover since employees who do not see a clear path to advancement are at risk of leaving.
  • A primary contributing factor to improving retention is to develop strong professional development opportunities for employees. By offering pathways for growth, including educational benefits, organizations keep employees engaged and invested in the company, making success a mutually beneficial outcome. Learn more from business leaders.
  • One primary benefit of hiring from within is saving both money and time since internal employees already have the institutional knowledge and need less training. This lends itself to less risk of turnover as well as improving retention and motivation for top talent and rising stars. Explore more benefits.
  • Turnover rate is the rate at which all employees, not just new hires, are leaving the company. This satisfaction metric is calculated by dividing the voluntary departures in a given period by the average number of employees during that same period, then multiplying by 100. See more HR calculations.

More FAQs on Related Career Paths

Explore frequently asked questions about other fields that you may be interested in.

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