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Compensation Trends for Human Resource Professionals [2019]

There’s high demand across the nation for human resources experts who can assist with employee recruitment, payroll, and other essential business operations. That’s why employers throughout the United States are investing in more competitive compensation packages to attract and retain top HR talent. But just how well do these HR jobs pay in 2019? And how does that compensation change from one position to another?

At HR Personnel Services, we specialize in helping talented human resources professionals connect with outstanding employers. Our award-winning staffing team offers a range of recruiting and placement services for HR experts across the nation—at no cost to job seekers. We’re proud to provide resources and guidance that help HR candidates pursue their career interests and goals. So today, we’ll be discussing 2019’s compensation trends for HR workers—along with average compensation offered across roles.

2019 Compensation Trends for HR Employees

Did you know that over 65% of organizations agree (or strongly agree) that retention is a growing concern in today’s competitive job market? That’s why employers are using different compensation methods to find and keep the best HR talent. According to 2019 compensation research from PayScale, companies are looking beyond traditional benefits and salary to retain HR staff. For example, 32% of businesses provided paid family leave for employees last year—and 38% offered some form of flex-time.

PayScale’s report offers another interesting insight into 2019 compensation trends: top-performing companies are relying more and more on variable pay and increased benefits to retain staff. Moving forward, we can expect employers to implement bonuses and other unique benefits into the compensation packages of HR professionals.

Average Salary Ranges for Human Resources Jobs

It’s difficult to measure general compensation for the field of HR. After all, each role in the industry has different demands and responsibilities—which directly impact compensation. According to 2019 research from, the average salary for a human resources position can range from just under $32,300 to over $240,000. And to get more specific insight, you’ll need to take a look at compensation data for specific roles.

How Much do HR Managers Make?

According to over 20,000 salaries submitted to Glassdoor, the average compensation for HR manager positions is $76,464 per year. Compensation for this role grows with experience and acquired skills—with seasoned HR managers earning upwards of $84,000 per year. Because these professionals play such an integral role in overseeing company HR policies and procedures, they often receive variable pay from employers, too.

Additional compensation for HR managers can vary widely depending on the employer. Some organizations offer yearly or quarterly bonuses to incentivize greater performance from their HR leadership, while others offer profit-sharing options. In either case, these additional funds make manager roles even more appealing—and can boost yearly income by up to 15% or more.

How Much do HR Generalists Make?

HR generalists handle the day-to-day management of HR processes in an organization, including the administration of policies and procedures. Based on over 7,400 salaries submitted, HR generalists receive an average compensation of $56,130 per year. Pay for this job increases for more experienced candidates, reaching upwards of $60,000 for veteran employees.

HR generalists may receive additional compensation beyond their base salary for excelling in their duties. Bonuses for this role can vary dramatically, but typically fall in the range of $3,000 to $4,000 per year when applicable.

How Much do HR Executives Make?

Base compensation for HR executives varies depending on their level of experience and size of the employer, but averages at about $130,000/year. As the field of HR continues to grow, compensation for this position continues to rise as well. According to data from Equilar (a leading provider of data-driven platforms for companies), total direct compensation for HR executives increased by 6.5% from 2017 to 2018 alone.

HR executives may receive thousands of dollars in bonuses and profit-sharing options to supplement their income, too. These additional methods of compensation are becoming more common across all HR roles as employers strive to find and retain top-performing candidates.

Ready for a New Opportunity?

As one of “America’s Best Recruiting Firms” for two years running, HR Personnel Services is the perfect partner to help you find human resources jobs. We recruit and place qualified applicants across a host of HR roles—including recruiters, generalists, executives, and temporary employees. No matter where you are in your professional journey, our team is here to help you take the next exciting step in your career.

To learn more about our professional opportunities and how they can position you for success, be sure to connect with us today. You can also reach out for more insight into the different forms of compensation for HR roles—and how to find the right job for your career goals. We’re always here to help.

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