What is Human Resources Management?

The Human Resources department is an essential business unit that focuses on supporting people, so they can accomplish organizational goals and contribute to the success of the organization. Primary activities include recruiting, hiring, compensation, training, and development. Human Resources serve as an umbrella for many functions including the following:

  • Benefits – administration of medical, dental and retirement plans, as well other programs such as educational assistance.
  • Compensation – development of a wage and salary program and variable pay systems such as bonuses and stock options, job analysis, job evaluations and performance management.
  • Labor Relations – working with labor unions in areas such as bargaining, mediation, and contract administration, or participation in the grievance process.
  • Employee Relations – Depending upon the size of the organization, this might involve employee events, conflict resolution, employment law, diversity, discrimination, or other general employee issues.
  • Training – coaching managers and supervisors, one-on-one career development, or organizational development.
  • Recruitment – advertising, screening, and hiring qualified individuals into the workforce.
  • Health, Safety, and Security – Risk Management, Worker’s Compensation, and OSHA compliance.

Working in any one of the above areas qualifies you as a Human Resources Specialist. Having expertise in all areas means that you are a Human Resources Generalist. The trend today is toward cross-functional skills—Generalist.

What does the future look like in this field?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of HR, Training, and Labor Relations managers and specialists is projected to grow by 17% between 2006 and 2016. Employers are very selective, however, in hiring individuals with the right mix of educational and workplace competencies. Today, organizations are delivering their human resources services differently, with more emphasis on customer service, leadership and business skills, and strong interpersonal skills. Due to high turnover, retirement, and restructuring in this economy, recruiting talented people is also a key priority.

What does Bellevue College offer in human resources management?

  • We offer a non-credit certificate in Human Resources Management through our Continuing Education Division. In this program, you may take either individual courses that interest you or complete the full certificate program.
  • For seasoned HR professionals we offer selected Continuing Education courses that qualify for PHR®/SPHR® re-certification units.
  • A Human Resources Assistant credit certificate is offered through our General Business Division.

Can I get college credits for my certificate?

We do offer Continuing Education Units (CEUs). Since our programs are offered through the Continuing Education Division, we do not offer college credits. For many people in the professional world—particularly those who already hold a college degree—a current professional certificate has proven to be of more value than another academic degree that may take several years to complete and be less directed toward “hands-on” knowledge.

Who should take this program?

  • HR professionals who want to update, refresh, or add to their knowledge base
  • HR professionals in small organizations who want a broader perspective
  • HR professionals who want to advance their careers
  • Managers or supervisors who need HR skills and knowledge
  • Career changers who want to prepare for the HR profession

How will obtaining this certificate benefit me?

The HR Management Certificate can be earned within a short time period, and classes are offered at convenient times. The courses are taught by talented practitioners and consultants with direct experience in the field. A certificate demonstrates to your employer your expanded knowledge in the Human Resources field and will certainly prove a worthwhile credential for future employers.

How do I get started in this program?

There are no prerequisites for registration. Anyone with an interest in enhancing skills is welcome. Just register for the courses you want.

What courses should I take?

Everyone should start with Human Resources Fundamentals, which is the introductory course that gives an overview of an HR Management career. Other required core courses and electives may be taken in any sequence with the exception of the Human Resources Certificate Capstone course. The capstone course may be completed only upon completion of the other seven required courses.

May I retake a class if I miss a session or want a refresher?

We cannot manage student absences by offering make-up sessions. Re-takes are not available.

What if I have an extensive experience in some of the topics taught? Can I skip or substitute classes?

Yes, on a case-by-case basis and subject to approval based on work history/experience and prior education, one of the required classes might be substituted with an elective class. However, you must still complete the total number of required/substituted classes and elective classes to receive your certificate. To request a class substitution, please fill out the Class Substitution Request Form.

How long will it take for me to receive a certificate?

Upon completion of 123 course hours including 102 hours of core courses, you may receive the Human Resources Management Certificate from Bellevue College. Students usually take two or more classes per quarter. Most classes are four or five weeks long and conveniently offered once a week. The overall time you need to complete the final certificate will depend on which courses you select and how many you take each quarter. Students typically complete the certificate in three quarters, but you may up to thirteen quarters (39 months).

What will it cost to complete a certificate program?

You pay for classes as you take them so the total cost of a certificate will depend on which classes you choose. The total cost averages $2,500 depending on the electives (plus approximately $400 in textbooks).

How do I get my certificate?

You must complete all required and elective courses in your program before receiving a Certificate of Completion. Once you’ve completed all your courses, click here to request a Certificate of Completion. You’ll be asked to complete a brief program survey, and then will be directed to the certificate request page. Your request will be forwarded electronically to an advisor for review. You will be contacted by the college if there are any questions. You can expect to receive your Certificate of Completion in the mail about three weeks after filling out your request.

Is your program affiliated with SHRM?

  • SHRM is the Society for Human Resources Management, the national professional organization for HR. Our program was developed with Advisory Board members who are members of SHRM, and most of our HR instructors are PHR® (Professional in Human Resources) or SPHR® (Senior Professional in Human Resources) certified professionals.
  • HRCI® (Human Resource Certification Institute) is the education and certification body for SHRM. Since Bellevue College is an HRCI® Approved Provider, we do offer a few classes that qualify for PHR®/SPHR® re-certification units.

For more information, visit the SHRM website. The local chapters for SHRM are: Lake Washington, Northwest, Seattle, and South Seattle.

Does Bellevue College give SHRM (PHR®, SPHR®, and GPHR®) certification exams?

No, these exams are administered by SHRM. The Lake Washington chapter provides a comprehensive certification exam preparation course. Information regarding the SHRM certification exams is available on their website.

Will Bellevue College help me get a job?

Continuing Education does not have a formal job placement service connected with this program. Bellevue College Main Campus has an active Career Center that offers classes on job search skills, posts job openings, and has an active Internship Program. Check out their web site at http://bellevuecollege.edu/careers.

Can I expect any changes or additions to these programs?

Definitely. Human Resources is an ever-evolving profession. We are constantly on the lookout for courses to add to our curriculum to keep it up to date. Our programs are designed to allow us to respond quickly to changing needs in the business community.

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