What Does a Human Resources (HR) Assistant Do?

Learn About the Salary, Required Skills, & More

HR Assistant smiling in the office sitting on floor working through papers.
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The human resources (HR) assistant helps with the administration of the day-to-day operations of a company's human resources department. The HR department usually oversees employee relations, compensation and benefits, recruitment, hiring, and training.

HR Assistant Duties & Responsibilities

The job generally requires the ability to provide assistance in the following areas:

  • Recruiting and staffing logistics
  • Performance management and improvement tracking systems
  • Employee orientation, development, and training logistics and recordkeeping
  • Employee relations
  • Company-wide committee facilitation
  • Communication between the company and employees
  • Compensation and benefits administration and recordkeeping
  • Employee safety, welfare, wellness, and health reporting
  • Employee services
  • HR filing system

The HR assistant helps with the implementation of services, policies, and programs aimed at maintaining a safe, positive environment in a company, as well as the recruitment and ongoing development of a superior workforce. The HR assistant generally reports to an HR director and also assists company managers with HR issues.

HR Assistant Salary

An HR Assistant's salary can vary depending on location, experience, and employer.

  • Median Annual Salary: $40,390 ($19.42 per hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $58,200 ($27.98 per hour) 
  • Bottom 10% Annual Salary: $27,610 ($13.27 per hour)

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018

Education, Training, & Certification

Employers usually require HR assistants to have a bachelor's degree in human resources, business, or a related field, a well as some experience.

  • Education: Coursework for a bachelor's degree in human resources typically includes the areas of business, psychology, writing, communication, management, and accounting.
  • Experience: Some employers may require at least one or two years of human resources experience or general business experience for this position.
  • Certification: HR assistant positions usually don't require certification, but candidates may want to consider certification programs if they plan on moving up in rank. Associations such as the HR Certification Institute and the Society for Human Resource Management offer such programs.

HR Assistant Skills & Competencies

To be successful in this role, you’ll generally need the following skills and qualities:

  • Communication skills: HR assistants must be good listeners, and be able to communicate the needs and expectations of both the company and its employees.
  • Interpersonal skills: Someone in this position has constant interaction with company employees and must be able to maintain a positive demeanor throughout even the most difficult situations.
  • Computer skills: HR assistants must be able to effectively work with a company's digital human resource systems.
  • Discretion: HR departments often deal with confidential information.

Job Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that employment in this field will grow 7 percent through 2026, which is the same as the overall employment growth for all occupations in the country.

Work Environment

HR assistants generally work in an office environment. The position can be one that comes with some stress. It often involves juggling many tasks and helping many people at once. Because of this, candidates must be able to work well under pressure and multitask.

Work Schedule

HR assistants usually work full time, about 40 hours per week, during regular business hours.

How to Get the Job

You can begin your job search by visiting job sites that specialize in human resources jobs:

HRCI Career Center

Offered by the HR Certification Institute, the HRCI Career Center is a free resource that lets you search for HR jobs by location and keyword, as well as set up job alerts.

HR Jobs

HR Jobs lets you upload your resume and search for HR jobs by location, job title, keyword, and company. It offers advanced search as well. The Society for Human Resource Management runs this free job site.


HumanResourcesJobs.com claims to feature HR jobs from more than 41,121 companies. You must register to search the site's listings.

HR Crossing

HR Crossing bills itself as the "premier private job site for human resources specialists." You must sign up with your email address to create a free account.

Comparing Similar Jobs

People who are interested in becoming HR assistants may also consider other careers with these median salaries: 

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2018