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Bachelors and Masters Programs for a Human Resources Management Career in South Carolina

According to current employment statistics (2015) from the US Department of Labor, South Carolina reached a new state employment record in March 2015 with more than two million workers across all industries statewide. The greatest increases were reported in Charlotte, Greenville and Charleston. As Iowa’s biggest industries for employment continue to contribute to a growing workforce, a premium is placed on the human resources specialists and managers that work to recruit, train and manage new and existing employees.

In a December 2013 article in the State, reporting on the University of South Carolina’s annual Economic Outlook Conference, economists stated that they had strong reason to believe that annual job growth would continue at between one and two percent yearly for the foreseeable future.

Industries like manufacturing and healthcare are among Iowa’s top employers, with these industry giants driving much of the demand for HR professionals in the state:

  • Medical University of South Carolina – 12,000 employees
  • Greenville Memorial Hospital – 7,500 employees
  • BMW Manufacturing – 7,000 employees
  • Palmetto Health Richland – 6,000 employees
  • McLeod Health – 5,000 employees
  • Spartanburg Regional Healthcare – 5,000 employees
  • Baldor Electric Company – 4,600 employees
  • Piggly Wiggly Foods – 4,001 employees
  • An Med Health Women’s and Children’s – 4,000 employees
  • Ben Arnold Beverage Co. – 4,000 employees

Also on the horizon are the leisure and the hospitality sectors, according to the University of South Carolina School of Business economics professor, Darla Moore. These sections of the economy continue to add new jobs as well, and are contributing to the drop in the statewide unemployment rate, which at 6.7% as of May 2015 is the lowest it has been in years.

Exploring Human Resources Careers with South Carolina’s Top Employers

South Carolina’s recent job growth makes HR positions more valuable than ever as the state’s biggest companies bring in highly qualified HR specialists and managers to screen, train, and manage a growing workforce.

The following job descriptions serve as a few examples of the types of day-to day duties that various HR positions entail (taken from a survey of job boards in May 2015, shown for illustrative purposes only):

HR Generalist – NPA Worldwide – Charleston

  • Contribute to HR strategy by developing programs and projects
  • Function as administrator of payroll
  • Improve, develop and retain best talent
  • Ensure consistent application of policies with team leaders and managers
  • Take corrective actions when necessary
  • Maintain HR metrics
  • Develop plans to create positive change in employee integration
  • Engage in personal development.
  • Provide general HR assistance
  • Improve work environment ensuring safety and productivity of employee base
  • Assess team performance
  • Make recommendations to proactively elevate team performance
  • Facilitate training programs
  • Perform surveys for feedback to HR Director regarding compensation and training needs

Director of Human Resources– Grand Bohemian Hotel, Charleston

  • Responsible for wages and salary reports
  • Determine competitive compensation plans
  • Prepare and forecast personal employment needs
  • Advise department managers of all employment compensation, employment, and benefits
  • Oversee analysis of records, maintenance, and communication required by law
  • Partner with the VP of HR to align HR resource framework and strategies
  • Develop staffing collaborative strategies with hiring manager
  • Serve as legal trainer for compliance issues for all staff
  • Manage unemployment claims
  • Attend unemployment hearings
  • Conduct unemployment investigations and complaints

Human Resource Specialist- Greenville Technical College, Greenville

  • Generate and distribute job notices for all temporary staff opening and faculty positions
  • Manage temporary employment applications
  • Pre-screens employment applications
  • Assist hiring authorities
  • Coordinate applicant tracking and on-boarding
  • Manage college background check, submission, retrieval, and review.
  • Follow all regulations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act
  • Schedule and coordinate orientation sessions – full-time employees, HR staff, acquaint new employees with the college and state technical college system
  • Schedule and facilitate new temp employees for orientation
  • Greet visitors, assist with way-finding
  • Assist walk-in applicants with the online application system
  • Provide coverage for admin assistant as needed
  • Respond to applicant status inquires
  • Manage temp staffing hires
  • Coordinate BPOs for temp staffing services and verify invoices
  • Monitor and update regulatory posters on all of our campuses for compliance

Earning the Right Degree for a Career in Human Resources

A good HR manager will need a bachelor’s degree for entry-level positions and a master’s for director and senior management positions. Employers will also often look for candidates who have added professional certification to their list of credentials.

Traditional college and university programs, as well as online programs at the bachelor’s and master’s level can be found throughout South Carolina.

Bachelor’s Degrees in Human Resource Management

Bachelor of Arts in Human Resource Management – Completing the Bachelor of Arts in Human Resources Management will generally prepare a student for their first job in HR.

Bachelor of Science Business Human Resource Management – This degree confers the expertise needed to work as an HR manager in most corporate environments.

At most schools the degree is a total of 120 semester units broken down as follows:

  • 52 general education units
  • 45 major course units
  • 26 elective units

There are prerequisite requirements that will need to be adhered to as each course typically builds on other courses. Students can typically complete the program in approximately four years when attending school full-time.

These programs typically includes general education classes as well as core courses in the

following general areas:

  • Leadership and Management
  • General Education
  • Human Resources
  • Accounting
  • Quantitative Analysis for Business
  • Economics and Finance
  • Project Management

Master’s Degrees in Human Resource Management

Many HR managers choose to maximize their earning power and career trajectory by seeking an M.A., M.B.A., M. S., M.H.R.M., or M.P.A.

Below are several examples of appropriate master’s programs that will prepare a student to work in specific industries:

Human Resources Master’s Programs for Education – For graduate students specializing in schools, community agencies, rehabilitation facilities, or higher education, an M.S. in Counseling and Human Resource Development will prepare them for this specialized field.

Coursework will often include:

  • Ethics
  • Counseling
  • Administration and management of school counseling programs
  • Case management planning and principals
  • Leadership and administration in student affairs
  • Human Resources Master’s Program (graduate certificate)

Master of Human Resources Management (M.H.R.M.) – A generalized human resources program that teaches core skills central to SHRM certification guidelines. Typical coursework would include:

  • Applications of employment law
  • Development of policies and procedures for HR planning, recruiting and selection
  • Techniques for training and developing employees and organizations
  • Creating competitive compensation supporting organizational goals
  • Examine employee benefits
  • How to create a comprehensive HR plan

Master of Business Administration in Human Resource Management (M.B.A.) – This human resources degree confers the higher level skills needed by those HR professionals in management and directorial positions. Typical coursework would include:

  • Communication
  • Management of People
  • Economics
  • Statistics
  • Program Design
  • Strategy
  • Operations Management
  • Supply Chain Management
  • Organizational Change
  • Power and Influence
  • Statistical Analysis
  • Legal Environment of Business

Professional Certification in Human Resource Management

Seeking additional HR certification outside of a degree can give an HR candidate an edge over the competition. Among the best-recognized certification agencies are:

  • HR Certification Institute (HRCI)
    • Professional in Human Resources (PHR)
    • Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR)
    • Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR)
    • Human Resource Management Professional (HRMP)
    • Human Resource Business Professional (HRBP)
    • California Certification for PHR and SPHR certified professionals

  • Recognition Professionals International (RPI)
    • Structuring Recognition Systems for Success – CRP I
    • Strategic Planning & Measurement – CRP II
    • Recognition Management & Maintenance – CRP III
    • Applying Recognition Systems – CRP IV

Professional Associations and HR Staffing Firms in South Carolina

From professional associations to potential employers, these organizations provide additional resources for South Carolina’s aspiring and existing HR professionals:

Government Agencies and Professional Organizations

HR Staffing Firms

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