Top HR Skills to Include on Your Resume

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated January 19, 2023

Published June 21, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Having a solid human resources (HR) department contributes to increased employee satisfaction and reduced turnover. When applying to an HR department, there are skills you need to be able to exhibit. When including these skills on your resume, you're a more desirable and employable candidate. In this article, we discuss what HR skills are and how to incorporate them into your resume or cover letter.

Related:

  • What Is a Human Resources Job (With Skills and Salary)

  • A Step-by-Step Guide on How to Get a Job in HR (With Tips)

  • How to Write an HR Objective Résumé Statement (With Examples)

What are HR skills?

HR skills are the skills required for people working in the human resources department to manage job postings, interviews and other tasks related to administration and management. The human resources department manages a company's hiring process, employee benefit programs, and facilitates meetings between employees and supervisors when necessary. Those who fill job positions like HR managers, specialists, recruiters and hiring managers will need to have these skills.

Related: 6 Useful HR Competencies (And How to Develop Them)

Duties and responsibilities for entry- and mid-level HR professionals

Here are some of the most common HR duties and responsibilities:

  • Manage job postings and consult with upper management to determine which qualifications are needed for specific job descriptions

  • Conduct interviews for job candidates and ask the right questions about experience and education

  • Review a candidate's references

  • Educate candidates about potential responsibilities and benefits

  • Determine which candidates are best-suited for a job position

  • Perform orientations for new employees

  • Manage paperwork for companies

Related: How To Get an Entry-Level Human Resources Job (With Skills)

Duties and responsibilities for senior HR professionals

Here are some of the most common duties and responsibilities for HR employees in upper management or leadership roles:

  • Delegate tasks to employees depending on qualifications and talents

  • Facilitate meetings to resolve conflict between employees, coworkers and upper management

  • Help companies implement new policies, including equity and sexual harassment

  • Manage employee and candidate recruitment

  • Implement disciplinary measures when necessary

Related: 13 of the Best Human Resources Jobs

HR skills to include on your resume

Here are some of the most important HR skills to include on your resume:

Communication skills

A primary role of those working in HR is to communicate with employees and job candidates. As such, you need exceptional communication skills. As part of the HR team, you need to deliver presentations, interview candidates and complete other tasks that require strong communication skills. Written communication is also essential because you need to take detailed notes and create employee handbooks to detail tasks or responsibilities.

Example: "Promoted healthy communication while navigating employee conflicts."

Decision-making

As an HR employee, you need to make fast decisions. This is especially true when conducting interviews or recruiting because you'll need to make independent decisions about whether a candidate is the right choice. Moreover, the HR department decides when disciplinary action is necessary and how to manage conflict between employees. HR needs to decide which actions are most appropriate and how to convey the right message.

Example: "Engaged in critical thinking to provide solutions as problems arrived."

Employee training

HR is also responsible for ensuring new employees receive the right training. Moreover, they provide the opportunity for employees to receive development and skills training. An example of development training opportunities for employees is first aid certification in a school setting. By ensuring that candidates and employees are given the chance to earn new skills, you're promoting more efficient and productive work. Training or certification may also include things that strengthen their current role and that will allow employees to take on new responsibilities.

Example: "Facilitated employee training programs to promote career advancement and improve employee wellbeing."

Empathy

HR manages employee concerns and complaints. This could include anything from conflict between two coworkers or issues in current policies and workloads. When you work in HR, you need to know how to show empathy for employees and how to make them feel heard. At times, an employee will only need someone to talk to and at others, you'll need to make big decisions about what the employee is telling you. You'll need to show your empathy skills to understand how employees feel in these situations before you make any decisions or give advice.

Example: "Demonstrated empathy skills by facilitating individual and group interventions to solve problems."

Knowledge of benefits and budgeting

The HR department of a company is generally responsible for the benefits and compensations of employees. You'll also be responsible for budget allocation when creating training and certifications or when you bring an outside source in to train employees. Human resources will need to speak to several departments within their company to determine which benefits are needed, whether their budget allows for external hires for training sessions and whether there is money for additional expenditures.

Example: "Navigated company benefits and budgeting by managing employee resignation, retirement and recruitment."

Organizing

The HR department manages a lot of paperwork relating to a company's hiring process and recruitment, as well as policy implementation. The documentation associated with these processes needs to be appropriately organized should they be required or reviewed in the future. HR also manages legal documents, so having a good organizational system will increase your efficiency and will enable employees to find the appropriate documents in emergencies.

Example: "Demonstrated organizational skills by implementing new filing systems that increased efficiency."

Knowledge of internal business structure

HR professionals work both with normal employees and upper management, which is why they need to have knowledge of business management and the internal structure of organizations. As an HR professional, you need to know about safety regulations, employee rights, and how to implement diversity and inclusion within organizations. Moreover, you'll need to know how to facilitate productive meetings between personnel.

Example: "Frequently updated the organizational chart and company policies as needed."

Leadership

HR professionals need to know when to lead employees and when to show employees how to be their own leaders. The HR department will set the tone as to how issues are managed within a department and whether employees are comfortable discussing difficult matters. By having an HR department that knows how to lead a team effectively, companies can promote a positive work culture and, subsequently, more effective and productive employees.

Example: "Demonstrated leadership skills by acting as team manager on several projects."

Knowledge of strategy plans

HR professionals need to know how to plan strategically to promote the overall success of the company. As part of the HR department, you'll invest in the company's employees and find new ways to promote a positive work culture. These employees need to have a good grasp of the company's business strategy and the strategy of its various departments to find appropriate job training and to conduct successful recruitment knowledge.

Example: "Navigated business strategy to determine which employee training was required."

Knowledge of technical requirements and skills

Employees in the HR department need to have technical skills and knowledge of a company's technical requirements. As an HR professional, you need to know how to conduct data analysis and how to make decisions about training sessions and policies depending on company data. An HR employee also needs to manage recruitment depending on the needs of a company, which will frequently be reflected in the company's data or employee feedback.

Familiarity with computers is essential because HR uses computers and technology daily. They'll need to post job descriptions to recruitment websites, scan or write notes, and perform other administrative duties.

Example: "Demonstrated technical knowledge by maintaining detailed case notes."

Task prioritization

HR professionals frequently have several tasks of the same priority to manage. Because of this, you'll need to know how to manage your priorities and how to decide which tasks to work on first. Often, you can delegate tasks to employees who are better suited to complete them; however, you'll also need to know which tasks to delegate.

Example: "Managed task prioritization to organize my day and decide which tasks must be handled first."

Related: How to Improve Your Skill Set and Keep Skills Current

HR skills on your resume and cover letter

Here are some ways you can incorporate HR skills to impress hiring managers and secure an interview:

Resume

When applying for an HR position, it's important to include these skills on your resume. Your resume won't go in-depth; however, try to discuss how your previous experiences have shaped you and the accomplishments you've achieved by using your HR skills.

Cover letter

Your cover letter provides you with the opportunity to explore your skills more elaborately. Take the opportunity to discuss how you'd contribute to the company you're applying to.

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