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What to Write for HR Magazine

What to Write for HR Magazine

Take a look at the most recent issue. Don’t have one? For a free sample copy, send your name, title, company, and complete street address including ZIP code to Nikki Power, Put "Free Sample Copy" in the subject line of the e-mail.

To view the most current online table of contents, click here.

Study the table of contents and the types of news, features and columns to get a feel for what you can contribute. Come up with ideas for future articles for HR Magazine. Most articles have a decidedly “how-to-do-it” approach and offer readers tips for making specific improvements in the workplace.

What Types of Articles Does HR Magazine Publish?

HR Magazine accepts manuscripts and queries for features, certain columns and HR Agendas. These and other types of articles are explained below. Submitted articles, regardless of type, must be original, unpublished works. Types of articles exclusively written by staff members are shown in blue.

Features. These are in-depth articles—approximately 2,000 to 2,500 words in length—on fairly narrow topics. The goal is to provide readers with enough information so they can deal adequately with an issue. You will want to investigate topics as fully as possible within space constraints. But, articles should have a narrow focus rather than provide a broad overview. For example, an article on how to avoid age discrimination would probably be too broad; a better, more narrowly focused article would examine how to avoid age discrimination when conducting layoffs. Be sure you search for keywords to your topic and make sure it hasn’t already been covered recently.

Types of features include:

Special Reports. In many issues, HR Magazine explores themes in HR disciplines in special reports, which consist of one to three features on topics ranging from workforce analytics to mentoring to hiring to fit the culture. For a list of upcoming special reports, see the editorial calendar at Ideas for article topics should be submitted at least three months before the publication date.

Profiles. Brief biographies highlight the accomplishments of noted HR professionals at all levels in their careers. To nominate your peers, e-mail Managing Editor Desda Moss at

First-Person Accounts. These 1,200- to 1,600-word essays written by HR professionals describe a successful project or initiative or outline ways to overcome a significant workplace problem. To suggest topics, e-mail Editor Christina Folz at

Q&As. These interviews highlight the initiatives, points of view and research of news- and policy-makers whose work influences the human resource profession. To suggest a subject, e-mail Associate Editor John Scorza at

Columns. HR Magazine accepts queries and manuscripts for the following sections: Agendas, Legal Trends, Management Tools, HR Technology, Court Report, HR News.

• “HR News” is produced primarily by staff reporters, but professional freelance writers may send queries to Beth Mirza, manager of online editorial content, at

• “Executive Briefing” provides senior leaders with timely business news and tips on how they can apply research to their management problems.

• “Solutions” provides the most frequently asked questions—and their answers—from the HR specialists who staff SHRM’s HR Knowledge Center.

• “HR Technology” columns cover technology issues related to human resource management. These articles analyze significant industry trends and offer practical advice and solutions on technological problems. Potential HR Technology subjects include establishing and managing an HRIS system, selecting vendors, social networking tools and policies for use in the workplace, making the best use of intranets, and protecting electronic privacy. HR Technology articles are 1,800 to 2,100 words. Submit ideas to Managing Editor Desda Moss at

• “Legal Trends” articles should be written by experts—such as attorneys, regulatory experts and law professors. These articles analyze employment law issues and offer guidance to help readers better understand how to comply with laws and regulations; how to comply with existing laws and regulations that intersect in confusing ways, such as when multiple statutes create complex or even contradictory requirements for HR professionals; how to minimize liability for situations that are particularly sensitive or legally risky, such as conducting a mass layoff or reclassifying workers as exempt or nonexempt; or how to better manage general HR practices that can affect legal risks, such as ways to conduct recordkeeping to avoid common legal problems. Legal Trends articles are 1,600 to 2,400 words. To suggest a topic, e-mail Allen Smith, manager of workplace law content, at

• “Management Tools” columns offer practical, hands-on HR tips for front-line managers. The goal is to provide information that HR professionals can share with supervisors to ensure that HR best practices are followed at all levels of an organization. Management Tools is the only section in HR Magazine that offers general management advice. Potential subjects include dealing with conflict, running a meeting, interviewing tips for line managers, and inspiring and motivating subordinates. These articles range from 600 to 1,200 words. HR practitioners or management consultants interested in contributing to this section may contact Contributing Editor Adrienne Fox at

• “Court Report” summarizes appeals court cases of significance to employers. Practicing employment law attorneys interested in contributing to this section may contact Allen Smith, manager of workplace law content, at

• “Agendas” are similar to features but are shorter and narrower in focus, with heavy emphasis on providing practical hands-on, how-to information. For example, while a feature might deal with the new trend in consumer-driven health care (CDHC)—discussing what it is, why it is becoming prevalent and how employers stand to gain from using it—an Agenda might deal specifically with the ways HR professionals can help educate and prepare employees so they can make more-informed decisions when purchasing CDHC services. While Agendas may include charts or sidebars, they generally do not include photographs. Agendas are 1,800 words. Consult the editorial calendar at for topics (ideas for article topics should be submitted at least three months before the publication date), and submit ideas by clicking here.

• “What’s New” constitutes a special section dedicated exclusively to new products and services. Items for this section are chosen solely at the discretion of the section editor, and publication does not imply endorsement by SHRM or HR Magazine. To submit a press release about a new product, click here.

• “Future Focus” examines economic and workforce trends that HR professionals are likely to encounter. It is written by Jennifer Schramm, manager of the Workplace Trends and Forecasting program at SHRM. To suggest ideas for Future Focus, contact the writer at