From aerospace and large pharmaceutical companies to resort casinos and Ivy League schools, Connecticut’s human resources professionals ensure the state’s workforce is strong and prepared for the challenges of tomorrow.
Connecticut is home to some of the nation’s best HR professionals. The state actively attracts HR talent with a number of strategies, including high average salaries and plenty of opportunities for advancement.
Job projections through the Connecticut Department of Labor and salary statistics through the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reveal the plentiful opportunities available to HR professionals in Connecticut:
Human Resources Management
- Human Resources Managers – Human resources managers in Connecticut earn a median salary of $122,920 – that’s about $9,000 more than the national median.
- Compensation and Benefits Managers – Compensation and benefits managers earn a median salary of $145,630 in Connecticut, landing this state third among the top-paying states in the nation for this profession.
- Training and Development Managers – The number of training and development managers in Connecticut is expected to increase 10.3 percent between 2016 and 2026, which is in line with the national projected increase of 10.4 percent during this time.
Human Resources Specialists and Assistants
- Human Resources Specialists – Human resources specialists in Connecticut earn a median salary of $65,990, which is nearly $6,000 more than the national median for this profession.
- Labor Relations Specialists – Labor relations specialists in Connecticut earn a median salary of $59,770.
- Training and Development Specialists – The number of training and development specialists in Connecticut is projected to increase by 10.1 percent 2016 and 2026, from 3,370 to 3,710.
- Compensation, Benefits, and Job Analysis Specialists – Connecticut’s compensation, benefits, and job analysis specialists earn a median salary of $71,810, which ranks them fourth among the top-paying states in the nation for this profession.
- Human Resources Assistants – Connecticut’s human resources assistants rank second in the nation in terms of salary, earning a median salary of $47,780.
Connecticut’s unemployment rate continues to improve, coming in at just 3.6 percent as of August 2019. As the state’s workforce grows, so too does the demand for HR professionals who are tasked with vetting, hiring, training, and maintaining this workforce. Connecticut’s human resources professionals keep the state’s economy competitive with an efficient and skilled workforce. Abundant HR professional opportunities can be found through the state’s largest companies, which include (as identified by the BLS):
- Yale-New Haven Hospital – 11,530 employees
- Yale University – 9,000 employees
- Pratt & Whitney – 8,000 employees
- Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation – 7,000 employees
- General Dynamics Electric Boat – 6,100 employees
- Hartford Hospital – 6,053 employees
- Mohegan Sun Inc. – 6,000 employees
Careers in Human Resources with Some of Connecticut’s Top Companies
HR professionals are equally vital in both private companies and government agencies. Numbers from the Connecticut Department of Labor show that employment in Connecticut can be divided into three main categories:
- Private-sector (nonfarm) – 1.70 million workers
- State and local government – 236,000 workers
- Federal government, military, and non-military – 32,010 workers
The following are examples of job descriptions from the private and government sectors (Shown for illustrative purposes only):
Private-Sector HR Job Descriptions
- Human Resources Manager with United Technologies in Farmington – This professional will work in UTC’s corporate office with HR activities, going between clients, business unit reps, employees, and senior leadership. Incumbents must be adept at planning ahead to meet specific business goals.
- Associate Director 4 of Labor Relations with Yale University in New Haven – This professional will serve as the HR department’s liaison between the schools Service and Maintenance union and its Police and Security unions. Incumbents will be involved with managerial training, collective bargaining, labor relations, and strategy development.
- Senior Diversity Business Consultant with Aetna in Hartford – This HR professional will work within the company to develop its diversity initiatives, helping Aetna to improve its overall strategy and be competitive in the marketplace. Incumbents will need to proactively identify instances where business leaders can modify their behavior for exceptional results. Duties also include developing employee training programs.
Public-Sector HR Careers
- Human Resources Leadership Association with the State of Connecticut – This professional will work with the state’s Small Agency Resource Team to provide complex HR services for a variety of state agencies. Incumbents will maintain HR records, participate in the recruitment process, conduct interviews, provide employment references, and counsel employees about employment topics.
- Human Resources Consultant with the University of Connecticut in Storrs – This professional works with important HR topics that include strategic personnel planning, creating job classifications, maximizing organizational effectiveness, employee training, labor relations, and personnel recruitment.
- Human Resources Specialist with the Army National Guard in Groton – This professional will serve as an adviser as part of a unit HR program. Incumbents will provide HR policy interpretation and procedural advice to individual military members as well as supervisors. Duties also include gathering statistical data for HR reports.
Getting the Right Degree for a Career in Human Resources
HR employers in Connecticut look for applicants with relevant education and work experience which, in some cases, include professional HR certification. One of the best ways prospective HR professionals can prepare for a dynamic and lifelong career in their field is through education.
Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resources
A bachelor’s degree in human resources is a widely required qualification for entry-level HR jobs. Connecticut is home to several colleges and universities that offer both online and traditional four-year degree programs in HR. Topics of study in these programs often include:
- Speech and communication
- Employee and labor relations
- Principles of human resources and management
- Staff training and development modalities
- Qualitative decision making methods
- Organizational coaching
A bachelor’s degree in Human Resources will fulfill the education requirements for the following careers (Shown for illustrative purposes only):
- Human Resources Manager with United Technologies in Farmington – At minimum candidates for this position must have a bachelor’s degree in a field related to HR
- Associate Director 4 of Labor Relations with Yale University in New Haven – candidates for this position can qualify with bachelor’s degree in human resources, industrial relations, or a related field
- Human Resources Leadership Association with the State of Connecticut – Applicants can qualify for this position with a bachelor’s degree combined with two years of HR experience
- Human Resources Consultant with the University of Connecticut in Storrs – Applicants can qualify for this position with a bachelor’s degree plus two years of HR-related experience
Master’s Degree in Human Resources – MBA in Human Resource Management
Completing a graduate education in Human Resources prepares students for advanced career opportunities. At least four colleges and universities in Connecticut offer traditional and online masters programs in the field of Human Resources. Each school has its own unique admission requirements, which can commonly include:
- Undergraduate degree, often related to Human Resources
- Prerequisite undergraduate HR courses
- Letters of recommendation and personal essays
- Prior HR work experience
- GMAT or GRE test scores
- Minimum GPA requirements
Upon acceptance into a graduate program, students will study advanced topics in the field of HR, including:
- HR in a global workforce
- Advanced training and development
- Negotiation techniques and dispute resolution
- Inclusion and diversity in the workforce
- International and federal legal issues in human resources
- Senior compensation and benefits packages
- Advanced finance for HR professionals
- Performance goals and management
Some schools also offer a one-year graduate certificate in HR Management that includes a concentration of these courses. A graduate certificate demonstrates an acquired level of graduate expertise.
A master’s degree in a field related to human resources will fulfill the education requirements for the following careers (Shown for illustrative purposes only):
- Human Resources Manager with United Technologies in Farmington – Candidates are preferred to have a master’s degree in human resources, management, a related field, or an MBA
- Senior Diversity Business Consultant with Aetna in Hartford – Applicants for this position are preferred to have a master’s degree
- Human Resources Leadership Association with the State of Connecticut – Applicants can qualify for this position by having a master’s degree in human resources management, labor relations, organizational psychology, public administration, or a related field, plus one year of HR work experience
- Human Resources Consultant with the University of Connecticut in Storrs – Applicants can qualify for this position with a master’s degree in human resources management, public administration, or a closely related field, plus one year of HR-related work experience
- Human Resources Specialist with the Army National Guard in Groton – Applicants for this position must have at least a master’s degree or two years of graduate-level studies
Professional HR Certification
Connecticut residents have access to a number of nationally recognized HR certification agencies. HR certification, which can be either preferred or required by employers in Connecticut, includes:
- SHRM-CP (certified professional)
- SHRM-SCP (senior certified professional)
HR Certification Institute (HRCI)
- Associate Professional in Human Resources (aPHR)
- Associate Professional in Human Resources – International (aPHRi)
- Professional in Human Resources (PHR)
- Professional in Human Resources – International (PHRi)
- Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR)
- Senior Professional in Human Resources – International (SPHRi)
- Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR)
- Certified Professional (IPMA-CP)
- Senior Certified Professional (IPMA-SCP)
Examples of some Connecticut positions that prefer applicants with a professional HR certification include (Shown for illustrative purposes only):
- Human Resources Manager with Martin-Bower Distributor in Enfield
- Human Resources Director with Bristol Hospital and Health Care Group in Bristol
- Human Resources Associate with BIC in Shelton
- HR Business Partner with TTM Technologies in Stafford
- Human Resources Generalist with Charter Communications in Stamford
Local HR Resources
Aspiring and current HR leaders have access to relevant resources located throughout the state:
Professional HR Organizations
- Human Resource Association of Central Connecticut
- Connecticut Society for Human Resource Management
- Human Resource Leadership Association of Eastern Connecticut
- Northwest Connecticut Human Resource Association
- Connecticut Healthcare Human Resources Association
- Society for Human Resource Management Western Connecticut
- Southern Connecticut Society for Human Resource Management
Major HR Departments in Connecticut
- United Technologies Corporation careers
- Immucor careers
- Pfizer careers
- Aetna careers
- State of Connecticut Department of Administrative Services
- City of Hartford Department of Human Resources
- City of New Haven Department of Human Resources
- University of Connecticut Department of Human Resources
- Federal government employment website USAJOBS
- Connecticut Regional Workforce Investment Boards
HR Staffing Agencies in Connecticut
- AR Mazzotta
- Kaiser Whitney Staffing
- Advantage Resourcing
- Fogarty, Knapp and Associates
- Human Resources Agency of New Britain
- Mackey and Guasco Staffing
- Bohan and Bradstreet
- The Concorde Group
Examples of HR positions were taken from a survey of job listings in the state at the time of this writing and are shown for illustrative purposes only. These examples do not represent job offers or positions that are currently available.
Salary and employment data compiled by the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics in May of 2018 for human resources managers, specialists, and assistants – https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ct.htm#11-9111. The BLS salary data shown here represents median – 90th percentile salary ranges for the state and includes workers at all levels of education and experience. This data does not represent starting salaries.
Job growth projections sourced from the Connecticut Department of Labor and published in the U.S. Department of Labor-funded Long Term Occupational Projections (2016-2026) database – https://projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm. Employment conditions in your area may vary.
All salary and job growth data accessed in October 2019.