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Career and Education Opportunities for Human Relations Managers in Chicago, Illinois

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for human relations managers in the Chicago, Illinois area. The national trend for human relations managers sees this job pool growing by about 9.6% over the next eight years. In general, human relations managers plan, direct, and coordinate human resource management activities of an organization to maximize the strategic use of human resources and maintain functions such as employee compensation, recruitment, and regulatory compliance.

The average wage in the general category of Human Resources jobs is $31 per hour or $64,333 per year in Illinois, and an average of $32 per hour or $65,602 per year nationwide. People working as human relations managers can fill a number of jobs, such as: director of training, human resources officer , and performance consultant.

The Chicago area is home to 180 schools of higher education, including nineteen within twenty-five miles of Chicago where you can get a degree as a human relations manager. The most common level of education for human relations managers is a Bachelor's degree. It will take about four years to learn to be a human relations manager if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Human Relations Manager

Human Relations Manager video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, human relations managers plan, direct, and coordinate human resource management activities of an organization to maximize the strategic use of human resources and maintain functions such as employee compensation, recruitment, and regulatory compliance.

Human relations managers serve as a link between management and employees by handling questions, interpreting and administering contracts and helping resolve work-related problems. They also furnish current and prospective employees with data related to policies, job duties, working conditions, wages, opportunities for promotion and employee benefits. Equally important, human relations managers have to administer compensation, benefits and performance management systems, and safety and recreation programs. They are often called upon to perform difficult staffing duties, including dealing with understaffing and administering disciplinary procedures. They are expected to advise managers on organizational policy matters such as equal employment opportunity and sexual harassment, and recommend needed changes. Finally, human relations managers design or administer special projects in areas such as pay equity, savings bond programs, day-care, and employee awards.

Every day, human relations managers are expected to be able to understand what others are saying to them even in a noisy environment. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for human relations managers to analyze and modify compensation and benefits policies to determine competitive programs and insure adherence to legal requirements. They are often called upon to furnish terminated employees with outplacement or relocation assistance. They also study legislation and collective bargaining contracts to gauge industry trends. They are sometimes expected to analyze training needs to lay out employee development, language training and health and safety programs. Somewhat less frequently, human relations managers are also expected to perform difficult staffing duties, including dealing with understaffing and administering disciplinary procedures.

Human relations managers sometimes are asked to oversee the evaluation, classification and rating of occupations and job positions. They also have to be able to maintain records and compile statistical reports concerning personnel-related data such as hires and absenteeism rates and represent organization at personnel-related hearings and investigations. And finally, they sometimes have to negotiate bargaining agreements and help interpret labor contracts.

Like many other jobs, human relations managers must have exceptional integrity and be able to deal with stress and deal with situations calmly.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Chicago include:

  • Academic Director. Plan, direct, or coordinate research, instructional, student administration and services, and other educational activities at postsecondary institutions, including universities, and junior and community colleges.
  • Administrator. Plan, direct, or coordinate supportive services of an organization, such as recordkeeping, mail distribution, telephone operator/receptionist, and other office support services. May oversee facilities planning and maintenance and custodial operations.
  • Chief Executive Officer. Determine and formulate policies and provide the overall direction of companies or private and public sector organizations within the guidelines set up by a board of directors or similar governing body. Plan, direct, or coordinate operational activities at the highest level of management with the help of subordinate executives and staff managers.
  • Compensation and Benefits Manager. Plan, direct, or coordinate compensation and benefits activities and staff of an organization.
  • Healthcare Manager. Plan, direct, or coordinate medicine and health services in hospitals, clinics, managed care organizations, public health agencies, or similar organizations.
  • Postmaster. Direct and coordinate operational, administrative, and supportive services of a U.S. post office; or coordinate activities of workers engaged in postal and related work in assigned post office.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Human Relations Manager Training

American Intercontinental University Online - Hoffman Estates, IL

American Intercontinental University Online, 5550 Prairie Stone Pky-Ste 400, Hoffman Estates, IL 60192. American Intercontinental University Online is a large university located in Hoffman Estates, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 22,963 students and an admission rate of 45%. American Intercontinental University Online has associate's degree, bachelor's degree, and master's degree programs in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated 224, 325, and 188 students respectively in 2008.

DePaul University - Chicago, IL

DePaul University, 55 E Jackson, Chicago, IL 60604. DePaul University is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 22,554 students. DePaul University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated zero and eleven students respectively in 2008.

Ellis University - Chicago, IL

Ellis University, 111 N Canal St Ste 380, Chicago, IL 60606. Ellis University is a small university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 2,692 students. Ellis University has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration.

Roosevelt University - Chicago, IL

Roosevelt University, 430 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60605-1394. Roosevelt University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,708 students and an admission rate of 43%. Roosevelt University has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration.

University of St Francis - Joliet, IL

University of St Francis, 500 N Wilcox St, Joliet, IL 60435-6188. University of St Francis is a small university located in Joliet, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,334 students and an admission rate of 60%. University of St Francis has a bachelor's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration.

DeVry University-Illinois - Chicago, IL

DeVry University-Illinois, 3300 N Campbell Ave, Chicago, IL 60618. DeVry University-Illinois is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 19,417 students and an admission rate of 92%. DeVry University-Illinois has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated 176 students in 2008.

North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central College, 30 N Brainard St, Naperville, IL 60540. North Central College is a small college located in Naperville, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 2,726 students and an admission rate of 69%. North Central College has a bachelor's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated one student in 2008.

Harper College - Palatine, IL

Harper College, 1200 W Algonquin Rd, Palatine, IL 60067-7398. Harper College is a large college located in Palatine, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,250 students. Harper College has a less than one year program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated four students in 2008.

National-Louis University - Chicago, IL

National-Louis University, 122 S Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL 60603. National-Louis University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 6,874 students and an admission rate of 56%. National-Louis University has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated thirty-three students in 2008.

Oakton Community College - Des Plaines, IL

Oakton Community College, 1600 E Golf Rd., Des Plaines, IL 60016-1268. Oakton Community College is a large college located in Des Plaines, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 10,552 students. Oakton Community College has a less than one year program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated seven students in 2008.

Moraine Valley Community College - Palos Hills, IL

Moraine Valley Community College, 9000 W. College Parkway, Palos Hills, IL 60465-0937. Moraine Valley Community College is a large college located in Palos Hills, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 17,477 students. Moraine Valley Community College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated one and two students respectively in 2008.

Saint Xavier University - Chicago, IL

Saint Xavier University, 3700 W 103rd St, Chicago, IL 60655. Saint Xavier University is a medium sized university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,307 students and an admission rate of 71%. Saint Xavier University has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration.

Lewis University - Romeoville, IL

Lewis University, One University Parkway, Romeoville, IL 60446-2200. Lewis University is a medium sized university located in Romeoville, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 5,536 students and an admission rate of 71%. Lewis University has a bachelor's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated three students in 2008.

Northwestern University - Evanston, IL

Northwestern University, 633 Clark St, Evanston, IL 60208. Northwestern University is a large university located in Evanston, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 20,128 students and an admission rate of 27%. Northwestern University has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated two students in 2008.

Joliet Junior College - Joliet, IL

Joliet Junior College, 1215 Houbolt Rd, Joliet, IL 60431-8938. Joliet Junior College is a large college located in Joliet, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 14,088 students. Joliet Junior College has a less than one year and a one to two year program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated five and four students respectively in 2008.

North Park University - Chicago, IL

North Park University, 3225 W Foster Ave, Chicago, IL 60625-4895. North Park University is a small university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 3,255 students and an admission rate of 30%. North Park University has a bachelor's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated two students in 2008.

Triton College - River Grove, IL

Triton College, 2000 5th Ave, River Grove, IL 60171-1995. Triton College is a large college located in River Grove, Illinois. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 15,547 students. Triton College has a less than one year and an associate's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated four and six students respectively in 2008.

Illinois Institute of Technology - Chicago, IL

Illinois Institute of Technology, 3300 S Federal St, Chicago, IL 60616. Illinois Institute of Technology is a medium sized school located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 7,404 students and an admission rate of 57%. Illinois Institute of Technology has a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated seven students in 2008.

Loyola University Chicago - Chicago, IL

Loyola University Chicago, 820 N. Michigan, Chicago, IL 60611-9810. Loyola University Chicago is a large university located in Chicago, Illinois. It is a private not-for-profit school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 15,670 students and an admission rate of 74%. Loyola University Chicago has a bachelor's degree and a master's degree program in Human Resources Management/Personnel Administration which graduated eight and zero students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Fundamental Payroll Certification: The Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC) is open to all those who wish to demonstrate a baseline of payroll competency.

For more information, see the American Payroll Association website.

Certified Professional in Learning and Performance: The Certified Professional in Learning and Performance (CPLP) offered by the ASTD Certification Institute offers workplace learning and performance (WLP) professions an opportunity to enhance credibility and prove value in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

For more information, see the American Society for Training and Development website.

Business and Employer Services - Professional Certification: Professional certification exam for Business and Employer Services in workforce development.

For more information, see the Dynamic Works Institute website.

Global Professional in Human Resources: Globalization is the defining political and economic force in the world today.

For more information, see the HR Certification Institute website.

Certified Manager: Certified Manager certification is valued for the credibility and recognition it brings to managers and the organizations for which they work.

For more information, see the Institute of Certified Professional Managers website.

Program Management Professional: Project Management Institute's newest credential is specifically developed to acknowledge the qualifications of the professional who leads the coordinated management of multiple projects and ensures the ultimate success of a program.

For more information, see the Project Management Institute website.

Work-Life Certified Professional: In association with Alliance for Work-Life Progress (AWLP), the work-life component of total rewards is now officially represented in the WorldatWork portfolio of educational offerings with the introduction of four new work-life courses and exams.

For more information, see the WorldAtWork website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois
Chicago, Illinois photo by Dschwen

Chicago is situated in Cook County, Illinois. It has a population of over 2,853,114, which has shrunk by 1.5% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Chicago, 114, is well above the national average. New single-family homes in Chicago are valued at $200,500 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, three hundred eighty-one new homes were built in Chicago, down from eight hundred seventy the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Chicago are health care, educational services, and professional, scientific, and technical services. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average commute to work is about 35 minutes. More than 25.5% of Chicago residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 10.0%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Chicago is 11.6%, which is greater than Illinois's average of 10.5%.

The percentage of Chicago residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 57.6%, is more than both the national and state average. Southlawn United Methodist Church, Southern Missionary Baptist Church and Lakeside Evangelical Church are all churches located in Chicago. The most common religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Muslim Estimate and the Lutheran Church.

Chicago is home to the Five Crossings and the Wrigley Field as well as Monticello Park and Wilson Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Lincoln Village Shopping Center, Market Place at Six Corners Shopping Center and Kimbark Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Chicago can choose from Extended Stay America, Embassy Suites Lakefront and Cottage Inn for temporary stays in the area.