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studying abroad since 1991. The author’s views below are entirely their own and may not reflect the views of

Careers within a modern HR team can be extremely rewarding; no longer is the role of human resources restricted to the hiring and firing of staff within corporations. HR departments across the world have been changing their ways over the past few years and now play a more active role than ever within the management and strategic planning of businesses. That’s why more and more HR professional are going back to college to study HR at a postgraduate level.

Learn New Skills

Postgraduate degrees offer you the chance to explore new areas of HR, learning new skills and developing existing ones along the way. Normally taking a year to complete, a postgraduate course would normally focus on the areas that interest you the most. If you’ve ever wanted to specialise in a specific sector of HR, be that labour law, health and safety or global human resource management, a postgraduate degree could allow you to gain the qualifications, skills and experience required.

Enhance Your Network

The HR industry has seen significant changes over the past few years, but learning new skills isn’t the only reason to study a postgraduate degree in HR. Going back to university is a great way to build up your network of contacts. Lecturers, fellow students, even librarians are great people to know and may just help you push your career in HR forward. You may have contacts at some big corporations already, but they won’t be there forever. In fact, the corporations themselves may not be around either. The companies and individuals that replace them can probably be found in the campuses of universities and colleges all over the world right now, so by studying a postgraduate degree and gaining these contacts, you are standing yourself in good stead for the future.

Cost Effective

Whilst postgraduate study can be expensive, there are many ways to reduce the costs. Many companies will sponsor employees if they choose to study a relevant postgraduate degree and although external scholarships can be hard to come by, if you are already an active member of the HR industry, you may find it easier to attain. Whichever way you manage to fund your course, postgraduate study in HR is cost effective. All industry surveys indicate higher salaries for postgraduates and your new degree may also give you an opportunity to leap-frog into a senior management position.

Recession Busting

Even in today’s tough job markets, gaining a postgraduate qualification in Human Resources can be a reliable way of securing you a future. If though, you find yourself without work you can always turn to consulting. Consultants often make 50% more than their employee counterparts, so if you’ve developed expertise in a specialised area of HR, it could be a very rewarding option. The HR consulting industry has been tipped for growth too.

The true value of gaining a postgraduate degree can’t necessarily be quantified though. You can’t put a price on your global networks, the friends and experiences you have or the new opportunities that come your way indirectly. A postgraduate degree in HR can enhance your prospects in many ways.

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