CAREER DEVELOPMENT / OCT. 20, 2014
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How to Become a Human Resource Information Systems (HRIS) Manager in the US

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The human resource department is central to the effectiveness of every organization. It handles a range of workforce issues, including compensation, hiring and training and development. HRIS managers are tasked with improving the efficiency of HR departments. They oversee all the IT facets of running these departments. If you have a background in IT and possess strong technical and organizational skills, consider pursuing this career.

What DO HRIS Managers Do?

The duties performed by HRIS managers include:

  • Maintaining data in HRIS databases and systems and availing it when required
  • Preparing graphs, reports, statistics and charts for supporting various HR operations
  • Coordinating, scheduling and tracking the progress of departmental functions and specialized work projects
  • Conducting data analysis on areas like employment, classification, compensation and employee relations.
  • Recommending the upgrade of IT systems used in the human resource department
  • Supervising a staff that may include HRIS technicians and data entry clerks.

Work Conditions

HRIS managers work full-time, from 9am to 5pm, Monday through Friday. They work in a fast-paced office environment, often equipped with modern computers and other equipment.

Salary

The following table highlights the amount of money aspiring HRIS managers can expect to earn:

Job Level

 

Annual Salary

Entry-level HRIS managers

 

$56,000-$81,000

Experienced managers

 

$81,000-$97,000

Senior HRIS managers

 

$97,000-$110,000

Source: Payscale

Education and Training

The first step to becoming a HRIS manager is to earn a bachelor’s degree in any of the following fields:

  • Human resources
  • Management information systems
  • Database administration
  • Information technology

Since many employers prefer individuals with a combination of IT and HR knowledge, the next step is to gain additional knowledge. As such, IT degree holders can pursue further short-term courses in HR, while HR degree holders can pursue additional IT courses, such as database technology.

It is important to note that this is not always the case. Some employers hire fresh graduates and train them on the job.

You can also begin as a HRIS technician and work your way up with increase in experience.

Important Skills and Abilities

To be a competent HRIS manager, you need:

  • Strong IT skills
  • Good teamwork skills
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Good problem-solving and technical skills
  • Good communication skills
  • An interest in improving organizational efficiency
  • Good project movement skills

Career Progression

Upon employment, it is advisable to pursue a master’s degree in information systems management to improve your technical and administrative skills. This program will also enhance your knowledge of information systems security administration, database processing and management concepts.

To improve your chances of moving a step ahead, you can obtain a professional certification such as:

  • Certified Human Resources Information Management Professional
  • Human Resource Information Professional (HRIP) Certification.

Job Opportunities

There are numerous opportunities for HRIS managers in almost all industries. With all the qualifications, you can work for:

  • Manufacturing firms
  • Education systems
  • Healthcare facilities
  • Government agencies
  • Financial service organizations

What’s next for HRIS managers? Well, those who gain vast work experience and earn advanced degrees can proceed to become IT project managers or chief technology officers.

Finally, the Bureau of Labor Statistics projects an 8 percent job growth for all human resources specialists. Although this growth rate does not meet the 11 percent average for all occupations – mostly because many large organizations outsource their HR functions to professional agencies – you can still expect to land in-house jobs in various small to mid-sized companies.

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