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How to get into HR

Hey everyone!

I'm just little curious as to how everyone got into HR, I'm really interested in maybe starting a career in HR, but I just don't know how to go about it. I left high school with not the best grades and thought many times about going to college but I've never been a classroom learner. I'm 22 years old and have mainly worked in coffee shops, I spent the past year and a half working for Tesco Bank but handed in my notice in May I probably should've waited until I found something else but I just didn't want to be stuck in some dead-end job that I hated.

Any advice on how I can go about things would be greatly appreciated!

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  • Good afternoon Shevonne,

    I started as a finance assistant in a large multi-national. My manager knew that I had my HR degree and this is where I wanted to work. In a nutshell they heard that the HR Admin Assistant was leaving and I was put forward to the HR Manager as a possible replacement. Needless to say I haven't looked back.

    As a way to get into HR, are there any agencies that you could register with locally who are able to champion your desire to get into HR?

    If you are not currently working, could you offer to volunteer in a HR department; whilst not paid it would get you valuable exposure to the day to day working of a HR department. And it may put you in the right place should a paid vacancy be available
  • Hi Shevonne

    What aspects of HR appeal to you? Have a think about what you might enjoy doing and think about what skills you already have that could be transferable to HR. You'll need to really sell yourself and your passion for HR to find a role - it's a competitive field to get into so your CV will really need to show how well suited you'd be to a HR role. Volunteering is a good idea if you can. or maybe take some time to build up your office and admin skills and work your way in that way. Another great route would be to look for a HR Apprenticeship where you could gain a qualification and work experience at the same time.

    Kind regards

    Jackie
  • Hi Shevonne,

    I fell into HR through my job in retail. I had no qualifications but more or less worked my way up and when the HR manager was going on maternity leave I was asked to cover for her. I loved it so much I signed up to a short taster course in HR in the local college.

    There are lots of short (3mth) courses online for a small few that would be really beneficial to you. I was never good at school but I got a distinction I’m that course because I was so interested. I’m now on my way to a Diploma in HR.

    There’s always a way and get in touch if you want any more info.

    Good luck!
    Sharon
  • Hi Shevonne,

    It's great that you find HR interesting. As someone who just realised that's what I want to do, and I'm slightly older than you i decided to reply. If you have a chance start working on your base as soon as possible. By that I mean search for interesting books, articles, essays, online courses. Finding an office job would be an advantage too because you could have regular hours so it would be easier to study, and you could gain some necessary skills. When you get a financial stability then you could potentially invest in doing level 3 HR cipd (they do monthly payments as well). Maybe your employer could support you with that? Worth checking. Last but not least, it would be worth to find a mentor who could guide you and support you in your studies. Maybe make a post in LinkedIn and see if you get any answer.
    It's great that you already know what you what to do, and I'm sure learning it will be more interesting for you. Use the time you have to explore and gain as much as you can from many options around.

    I hope that helps.
    Joanna
  • In reply to Joanna:

    I regret I didn't learn all of that when I was younger but I simply didn't know that's what I want to do :)
  • In reply to Emma Louise:

    Hey,

    Thanks so much for replying :)

    What sort of agencies would you say I should look into?
    I've actually started working for NHS track and trace, it's obviously just temporary at the moment and not something that I could do forever or make a career out.

    I just want to be able to have something to work towards but I think I do just need a little bit of guidance on how to do that
  • In reply to Joanna:

    Hey Joanna thank you so much for your reply :)

    I just have a couple of questions if thats okay

    I don't mean to ask like dumb questions but when you say working on my base by reading interesting books etc, is there anything specific that you would recommend or just things in general that I would find interesting?

    Also there's quite a lot of levels that you can do, I don't fully understand the differences between them, so what exactly is a Level 3 CIPD and how would that level be most beneficial?

    I've also started recently working again but its just a temporary job so I doubt my employer would support me but I never even thought about LinkedIn so will definitely have a look at that, thank you, I found your response really helpful!

    Shevonne
  • In reply to Sharon:

    Hi!!

    Oh wow thats great!

    What course would you say is the best to do to like get into HR? If I'm being fully honest I learn best in a working environment rather than a learning one but I'm 100% willing to go back to school if that's what I need to do

    Thank you!
  • In reply to Jacqueline:

    Hi Jackie!

    Thank you for your reply!

    Honestly I don't really know what does fully appeal to me I suppose for now I just like the idea of it, and I like the growth that comes with it. I'm a big people person and not very much one for doing the exact same job everyday so the fact that I wouldn't be doing the same thing day in, day out appeals to me very much.

    Where would you say the best places are for me to volunteer?

    Thank you
    Shevonne
  • In reply to Shevonne:

    Hi Shevonne

    It's hard to suggest where you could volunteer, not knowing where you're based or what sort of organisations there are in your local area. Volunteering as a school governor is usually always available wherever you are and that will give you exposure to a lot of HR related issues. You could also look for small charities and community groups (for example my son's out of school club is a charity and always looking for new committee members).

    Kind regards
    Jackie
  • In reply to Shevonne:

    I was registered with local agencies, who I could easily keep in contact with. Another route to possibly look at that i'm not sure if anyone has mentioned, but have you looked into an apprenticeship in HR? If you search on the gov.uk website for apprenticeships it should bring up the main portal for all vacancies.

    Never say never with the track and trace, a friend of mine started doing the track and trace when it was first launched and she has now moved teams. Think she said she is now doing the checking up on people to see that they are isolating etc.
  • Hi,
    I came across to HR from customer service roles. I agree with the comments from the others about gaining experience through volunteering and to consider what areas of HR you would be interested in.

    I would also suggest you have a think about the types of business environment you like and are best suited to. HR can be very different depending on the business. Before applying for a HR job, or waiting for one to come up, it might be an idea to look at other jobs that are out there in businesses in your area. Do they seem to have a high turn over and advertise for people a lot on a regular basis - if so, you might be doing a lot of fast paced recruitment. Or do their adverts focus on rewards and benefits - if so, you may well focus less on recruitment and more on reward programmes for example. You could read the local press to see if businesses local to you are expanding, or diversifying. This knowledge really does help you to find a role that is suited to your needs.

    I always think you can find out quite a lot about the business from the other adverts that are not HR related to.
  • Steve Bridger

    | 0 Posts

    Community Manager

    10 Nov, 2020 15:14

    Hi Everyone - and a particular welcome to those new to this Community :)

    This gets asked quite often - or a variation on this theme.

    Two great starter threads signposted here...
    xwww.cipd.co.uk/.../310931
  • Hi Shevonne,

    I had the same problem as yourself around about a year or so ago so can totally relate. As many have eluded to, it is quite a competitive field to get into especially with little to no experience.

    I would highly recommend looking into a HR apprenticeship, that is the route I took due to lack of experience. They're a great way to learn on the job, establish which areas of HR you enjoy plus you'll earn a wage all at the same time. I'm coming to the end as I started mine 18 months ago now and have not looked back since!

    The government website the first place I would recommend you have a look for any vacancies.

    Good Luck!
  • Hi Shevonne,

    I had the same problem as yourself around about a year or so ago so can totally relate. As many have eluded to, it is quite a competitive field to get into especially with little to no experience.

    I would highly recommend looking into a HR apprenticeship, that is the route I took due to lack of experience. They're a great way to learn on the job, establish which areas of HR you enjoy plus you'll earn a wage all at the same time. I'm coming to the end as I started mine 18 months ago now and have not looked back since!

    The government website the first place I would recommend you have a look for any vacancies.

    Good Luck!