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Posted On: January 8, 2018 by Henry R. Steele

The following article discusses the career path of Human Resources Generalist. Learn about how to become one, education requirements, job duties, traits and qualities, national salary outlook as well as top national employers of Human Resources Generalists.

Job Duties

Human resources generalists are responsible for helping other managers make important HR decisions. This includes assisting them in building good employee relationships and attracting new talent. Generalists often work alongside upper management to develop proper recruitment strategies.

Additionally, these professionals perform general HR duties, including benefits, payroll, and training. They also monitor company policies and procedures and suggest changes where necessary. The also develop new practices and policies as required. Human resources generalists are strong team workers who deal with everybody from the most senior managers to regular members of staff. Usually, they will report directly to the director of human resources, while supervising staff themselves. They are, therefore, a type of human resources manager.

Other job duties of a human resources generalist include:

  • Being a liaison between top management and employees, ensuring questions are answered and concerns resolved in relation to company regulations, practices, and policies
  • Holding responsibility for HR documentation, including performance evaluations, training, and staffing
  • Providing guidance to managers in terms of employee relations and recruitment
  • Holding responsibility for employee benefit programs, training, and compensation

Where We Work

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 136,100 human resources generalists in 2016. The largest employers of these professionals were:

  • Management of companies and enterprises: 14%
  • Professional, scientific, and technical services: 13%
  • Manufacturing: 13%
  • Government: 10%
  • Healthcare and social assistance: 9%

How to Become

A bachelor’s degree is required as a minimum, but most human resources generalists hold a master’s degree. Typically, they have a major in business administration or in human resources. It is also beneficial to complete additional certifications.

Education Requirements

A human resources generalist will generally need a bachelor’s degree in a field related to human resources. This includes information technology, education, business management, and finance. It is helpful to also complete courses in fields such as industrial psychology or conflict management. It is becoming more common for these professionals to hold a master’s degree, particularly the master of business administration (MBA), or a master’s in labor relations or human resources.

Work experience is also of great importance. Human resources generalists must be able to lead, direct, and organize others. Often, they start as labor relations specialists and work their way up. They must also have demonstrable knowledge in local, state, and federal employment laws, human resources software, and compensation and benefits plans.

There is no legal requirement for a human resources generalist to be certified or licensed, but it is beneficial. There are numerous professional associations, including the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, WorldatWork, the HR Certification Institute (HRCI), and the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), that offer certifications.

Traits & Qualities

The most effective human resources generalists have the following traits to some degree or other:

  • Excellent decision making skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills
  • Proven leadership skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Communication skills, both verbal and written
  • Up to date computer skills

Minimum Education

Bachelor’s Degree

National Salary

The national average salary estimate for Human Resources Generalist was $54,497. This number is estimated from over 2,586,524 employees, users past and present job advertisements from Indeed.com. This equates to an hourly salary of $28.38 and monthly of $4,541.

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$18,000

$110,000

Salary Distribution

Salary by State

The following section lists Human Resources Generalist salaries in each state around the country. The figures are based on the total number of job postings through Indeed.com. For example, Alaska had the largest quoted salary of $68,236 while Montana had the smallest quoted salary of $36,691.

Alaska Illinois North Carolina South Dakota
Alabama Indiana Nebraska Tennessee
Arkansas Kansas New Hampshire Texas
Arizona Kentucky New Jersey Utah
California Louisiana New Mexico Virginia
Colorado Massachusetts Nevada Vermont
Connecticut Maryland New York Washington
DC Maine Ohio Wisconsin
Florida Michigan Oklahoma West Virginia
Georgia Minnesota Oregon Wyoming
Hawaii Missouri Pennsylvania
Iowa Mississippi Rhode Island
Idaho Montana South Carolina
Alaska$68,236 Rank: 1st

The average salary ranks 1st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Client of MRC Corp. – MiningSearch.com.

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$17,000

$152,000

Salary Distribution
Alabama$51,466 Rank: 30th

The average salary ranks 30th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Clinton Street Recruiters, Austin Allen Company, ASAP Search & Recruiters, and iproveit.com.

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$14,000

$122,000

Salary Distribution
Arkansas$55,726 Rank: 12th

The average salary ranks 12th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Century Associates, The Judge Group, Austin Allen Company, and Robert Half Finance & Accounting.

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$17,000

$116,000

Salary Distribution
Arizona$49,694 Rank: 36th

The average salary ranks 36th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Professional Placement, Professional Placement, Inc., Adecco, and HR Finders.

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$14,000

$115,000

Salary Distribution
California$60,429 Rank: 5th

The average salary ranks 5th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Jill's Link Staffing, Inc., At-Tech, NelsonJobs, and ACT 1.

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$24,000

$113,000

Salary Distribution
Colorado$53,144 Rank: 21st

The average salary ranks 21st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Mile High Talent Inc., Robert Half Finance & Accounting, Ajilon, and Groupe LEADER.

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$24,000

$94,000

Salary Distribution
Connecticut$60,577 Rank: 4th

The average salary ranks 4th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Mackey & Guasco Staffing LLC, Diedre Moire, Fogarty Knapp & Associates, Inc, and Coworx Staffing.

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$22,000

$116,000

Salary Distribution
DC$61,392 Rank: 2nd

The average salary ranks 2nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Washington DC Based-Company, United States Department Of Defense, Groupe LEADER, and Robert Half Finance & Accounting.

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$26,000

$110,000

Salary Distribution
Florida$48,737 Rank: 39th

The average salary ranks 39th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Liberty Mutual, CyberCoders, Randstad Professionals, and Code Red Recruiting.

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$19,000

$92,000

Salary Distribution
Georgia$52,752 Rank: 23rd

The average salary ranks 23rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Roland and Associates, Confidential-Manufacturing, Japanese Manufacturing company, and CyberCoders.

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$18,000

$106,000

Salary Distribution
Hawaii$49,517 Rank: 37th

The average salary ranks 37th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Direct Sales Recruiting, LLC, Staffing Solutions of Hawaii, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, and OfficeTeam.

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$18,000

$95,000

Salary Distribution
Iowa$57,139 Rank: 10th

The average salary ranks 10th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Career Development Partners, Palmer Group, CyberCoders, and The University of Iowa.

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$25,000

$101,000

Salary Distribution
Idaho$61,198 Rank: 3rd

The average salary ranks 3rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like SHC Universal, Ada County, and Kootenai County.

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$29,000

$105,000

Salary Distribution
Illinois$55,021 Rank: 16th

The average salary ranks 16th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CIG, Beacon Hill Staffing, Clifton Johnson Associates, Inc., and fulltimeGiGS.

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$17,000

$114,000

Salary Distribution
Indiana$46,905 Rank: 44th

The average salary ranks 44th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Liberty Mutual, Aegis Worldwide, LLC, Cummins, and MRINetwork.

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$14,000

$106,000

Salary Distribution
Kansas$48,205 Rank: 40th

The average salary ranks 40th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Bell & Associates, Inc., Morgan Hunter Companies, Paydayz Staffing Solutions, Inc., and Arnold Group, The.

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$23,000

$82,000

Salary Distribution
Kentucky$51,548 Rank: 29th

The average salary ranks 29th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Judge Group, Talis Group Inc., Randstad, and CMI Consulting.

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$22,000

$92,000

Salary Distribution
Louisiana$50,201 Rank: 34th

The average salary ranks 34th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The McIntyre Group, Frazee Recruiting Consultants, Inc., Austin Allen Company, and Robert Half Finance & Accounting.

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$15,000

$104,000

Salary Distribution
Massachusetts$59,092 Rank: 7th

The average salary ranks 7th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Liberty Mutual, Willmott & Associates, Diedre Moire, and Beacon Hill Staffing.

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$18,000

$124,000

Salary Distribution
Maryland$55,711 Rank: 13th

The average salary ranks 13th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like WSSC, Randstad, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, and Johns Hopkins University.

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$20,000

$109,000

Salary Distribution
Maine$51,973 Rank: 27th

The average salary ranks 27th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Adecco, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, Maine Staffing Group, and Spectrum Generations.

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$26,000

$83,000

Salary Distribution
Michigan$49,391 Rank: 38th

The average salary ranks 38th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Management Business Solutions, Your Next 9 to 5, Ajilon, and Groupe LEADER.

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$19,000

$93,000

Salary Distribution
Minnesota$57,799 Rank: 9th

The average salary ranks 9th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like EDEN PRAIRIE SCHOOLS, Cummins, fulltimeGiGS, and Cameron Craig Group.

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$27,000

$99,000

Salary Distribution
Missouri$47,736 Rank: 41st

The average salary ranks 41st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Groupe LEADER, Pro Staff, Resources for Human Development, Inc., and Beacon Hill Staffing.

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$14,000

$116,000

Salary Distribution
Mississippi$55,301 Rank: 14th

The average salary ranks 14th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like ASAP Search & Recruiters, Gables Search Group, The Job Jobber, and Systematic business consulting.

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$28,000

$86,000

Salary Distribution
Montana$36,691 Rank: 49th

The average salary ranks 49th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like State of Montana and LC Staffing.

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$8.60

$33.65

Salary Distribution
North Carolina$55,126 Rank: 15th

The average salary ranks 15th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Judge Group, Ingersoll-Rand, Consumer Goods Manufacturer, and Affinity Executive Search.

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$19,000

$110,000

Salary Distribution
Nebraska$50,939 Rank: 31st

The average salary ranks 31st among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Noll Human Resource Services, Cornerstone Staffing Inc., Resources for Human Development, Inc., and State of Nebraska.

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$25,000

$86,000

Salary Distribution
New Hampshire$47,232 Rank: 43rd

The average salary ranks 43rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like City of Nashua, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, CSS Placement Services, and The Nagler Group.

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$12.40

$40.80

Salary Distribution
New Jersey$58,252 Rank: 8th

The average salary ranks 8th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like DirectHR, CyberCoders, International Business Promotion, Inc. (IBP, Inc.), and Direct Sales Recruiting, LLC.

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$22,000

$112,000

Salary Distribution
New Mexico$47,560 Rank: 42nd

The average salary ranks 42nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Los Alamos National Laboratory, Parker and Lynch, Accounting Principals, and Sabio Systems.

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$14,000

$107,000

Salary Distribution
Nevada$50,141 Rank: 35th

The average salary ranks 35th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CIG, Aerotek, Solid Landings, and Gecko Hospitality.

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$23,000

$86,000

Salary Distribution
New York$59,130 Rank: 6th

The average salary ranks 6th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Liberty Mutual, Nielsen Associates, Drum Associates, and Michael Page.

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$19,000

$120,000

Salary Distribution
Ohio$53,239 Rank: 20th

The average salary ranks 20th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Career Brokers, Inc., The Judge Group, Vaco, LLC, and Cameron Craig Group.

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$14,000

$117,000

Salary Distribution
Oklahoma$45,301 Rank: 47th

The average salary ranks 47th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CIG, Principal Technologies Inc., Fuse3 Solutions, and Accounting Principals.

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$15,000

$92,000

Salary Distribution
Oregon$53,610 Rank: 19th

The average salary ranks 19th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Community Counseling Solutions, The HT Group, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, and AppleOne.

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$24,000

$95,000

Salary Distribution
Pennsylvania$52,655 Rank: 24th

The average salary ranks 24th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Right Recruiting, Aspire Staffing Partners, The Performance Group, and Ricoh.

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$21,000

$98,000

Salary Distribution
Rhode Island$50,554 Rank: 32nd

The average salary ranks 32nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Willmott & Associates and Randstad.

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$25,000

$81,000

Salary Distribution
South Carolina$50,219 Rank: 33rd

The average salary ranks 33rd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CIG, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, SC Career Search, and Complete Employee Services.

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$22,000

$89,000

Salary Distribution
South Dakota$45,975 Rank: 45th

The average salary ranks 45th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Robert Half Finance & Accounting.

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$18,000

$87,000

Salary Distribution
Tennessee$52,182 Rank: 26th

The average salary ranks 26th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Austin Allen Company, CIG, Arthur Wright and Associates, and Confidentially Posted.

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$22,000

$94,000

Salary Distribution
Texas$51,728 Rank: 28th

The average salary ranks 28th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like CIG, DynCorp International Inc, HW Dallas, and BIC Alliance.

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$14,000

$115,000

Salary Distribution
Utah$52,858 Rank: 22nd

The average salary ranks 22nd among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like The Riddick Group, MRINetwork, The Judge Group, and OfficeTeam.

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$22,000

$95,000

Salary Distribution
Virginia$54,158 Rank: 18th

The average salary ranks 18th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like General Dynamics Information Technology, CyberCoders, Medical Group, and Robert Half Finance & Accounting.

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$21,000

$101,000

Salary Distribution
Vermont$45,933 Rank: 46th

The average salary ranks 46th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Spectrum Consulting, Spherion, and Leddy Group.

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$23,000

$70,000

Salary Distribution
Washington$55,955 Rank: 11th

The average salary ranks 11th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Boeing, Volt, ConfidentialPosting, and Orin Rice Staffing & Consulting.

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$24,000

$101,000

Salary Distribution
Wisconsin$54,546 Rank: 17th

The average salary ranks 17th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Management Recruiters of Wausau, E3 Recruiting, Ploeger Recruiting Services, and Bertram & Associates.

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$22,000

$101,000

Salary Distribution
West Virginia$44,984 Rank: 48th

The average salary ranks 48th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Activ8 Recruitment and Solutions and Adecco.

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$15,000

$89,000

Salary Distribution
Wyoming$52,307 Rank: 25th

The average salary ranks 25th among states in the country. There were also job openings from employers like Union Telephone/Union Wireless and Natrona County School District.

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$26,000

$83,000

Salary Distribution

Top 20 National Employers

According to Indeed.com, the following states had employers looking to hire a Human Resources Generalist. The quoted salary figure represents the average salary from all job postings by this employer.

Employer Name Location Average Salary

Learn More

Related Careers

Career Name Average Salary
Henry R. Steele
Henry R. Steele
Managing Editor
Henry is Managing Editor of BusinessStudent.com. He is a seasoned business professional who regularly consults with local business's throughout Southern California. Henry pursued his undergrad in Business and Economics at the University of San Diego and gained valuable life changing experience through a unique internship upon graduation.Follow on Twitter.com

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