Almost all HR jobs require the candidate to possess at least a three year degree. A bachelor's degree in human resources will be the sure-shot way to break into this field, though degrees in business administration, education, public administration, and communications tend to open many doors as well.
HR managers are expected to wear multiple hats, especially in smaller companies. Consequently, they tend to be from diverse fields. A training and development HR manager, for instance, might hold a degree in education, while an employee recruitment manager in a technology company might hold an engineering degree.
To improve your chances of making strides in human resources, a graduate degree in this field is highly recommended. MBA graduates with a specialization in HR are highly coveted and can often make six figure incomes straight out of school.
You can also obtain certificates in HR to boost your chances of bagging a career in this field. Two popular certificates are Professional in Human Resources (PHR) and Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR).
Finding Work in Human Resources
If you are still in college, the best way to break into HR is to find an internship in the HR department of a large company, and to leverage that internship into a career in this field.
Hunting for jobs through the usual portals - job search sites, career fairs, etc. - works quite well too. The Society of Human Resource Management (SPHR) maintains a job board dedicated entirely to jobs in this field and should be a happy hunting ground for most would-be HR professionals.
Since a HR professional's job entails dealing with people, more and more companies are turning towards social networks to fill their human resources ranks. A well maintained profile on LinkedIn and Twitter can definitely boost your chances of landing a job in this field.
Finally, it helps to keep in mind that most companies would rather promote someone from within the company who knows the company culture to the rank of HR manager than hire someone from outside.
A career in human resources is a challenging, enriching and rewarding experience. It promises a lot of growth and tons of job satisfaction. Breaking into this field might be difficult, but the rewards are well worth the effort.