Human Resource Generalist Is Most in-Demand HR Position, SHRM Survey Shows

Fewer than 3 out of 10 companies are hiring HR talent

July 16, 2015
Human resource generalists are the most sought-after HR professionals, with 55 percent of respondents to a new Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) survey who are hiring HR talent saying they were hiring for the position.

SHRM’s summer 2015 HR Jobs Pulse Survey Report found that almost one-quarter (24 percent) of companies that are hiring are seeking HR professionals with employment/recruitment skills. That category was followed by people with benefits experience (16 percent of companies hiring), employee relations skills (13 percent) and training/development skills (13 percent).

However, fewer than 3 out of 10 respondents (27 percent) said their organizations were hiring for HR positions. This number is unchanged from December 2014 and up from 20 percent in January 2014.

“Hiring for HR positions depends greatly on the size of the company,” said Jen Schramm, SHRM’s manager of workforce trends. “Larger companies employ more HR professionals so it makes sense that they are more likely to report that they are trying to fill HR positions, especially during a jobs recovery. Improvements in the job market are also making HR professionals more confident about seeking out new opportunities for themselves.”

According to the report, only 1 percent of small companies (99 or fewer employees) are hiring, while nearly two-thirds of employers with 25,000 or more workers are hiring for HR jobs.

Other key findings from the report include:

  • More than 1 out of 3 respondents (37 percent) who said they were looking or planning to look for a new job cited “more compensation/pay” as the reason. Thirty-three percent pointed to “better career advancement opportunities” as the reason for seeking a new job.
  • More than 1 out of 4 HR professionals (27 percent) had some degree of concern about their job security. However, fewer respondents in the summer 2015 survey said they were worried about the stability of their jobs compared with previous surveys.
  • The vast majority of HR professionals (88 percent) had some level of confidence that they could land a new position, if needed. 

The HR Jobs Pulse Survey examines hiring trends in the human resource profession as well as HR professionals’ views about job security and ability to find work elsewhere. SHRM surveyed 378 respondents from a randomly selected sample of its members throughout the United States.

To read the full survey report, please visit,%20Summer%202015.pdf.

Media: For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Vanessa Gray of SHRM Public Affairs at 703-535-6072 and or Kate Kennedy at 703-535-6260 and

About the Society for Human Resource Management
Founded in 1948, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR membership organization devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 275,000 members in over 160 countries, the Society is the leading provider of resources to serve the needs of HR professionals and advance the professional practice of human resource management. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. Visit SHRM Online at and follow us on Twitter @SHRMPress.


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