How to Become a Human Resources Administrator without Experience

Are you looking for a detailed guide to becoming a Human Resources Administrator and progress in your profession within the HR department? 

This article provides a detailed guide on the steps needed to become an HR administrator.

An HR administrator is an HR professional responsible for most of the employee documentation, including contracts, recruitment paperwork, and starter packs.

They act as the first link to employees and external partners for all HR-related queries. Human resources managers expect hr administrators to form and maintain employee records, update databases internally, prepare and amend necessary HR documents, review and renew company policies and legal compliance, communicate with external partners, regularly report on HR metrics, be the first point of contact for employees on any HR-related queries, assist with payroll by providing the department with relevant employee information, and help with various arrangements internally.

A bachelor’s degree in information technology, psychology, or human resources is required to become an HR administrator. However, some organizations prefer several years of experience for a senior HR administrator role.

If you’re looking to know more about becoming an HR administrator, this article is suitable for you. We provide a detailed guide below on how to become an HR administrator.

Step 1: Have a Bachelor’s Degree

A degree is the most basic requirement and core competency to become an HR administrator. It can be a bachelor’s or a master’s degree in business administration, human resources, or any such field.

If you’re interested in a human resources administrator position, you must fulfill the least qualification criteria to become eligible for the role. 

A bachelor’s degree in a human resources field teaches you the fundamentals of a human resource information system administrator role.

Qualifications hone your abilities to become an expert, so becoming an HR administrator should be your goal. With a relevant degree, you can master the fundamentals of the HR administrator job description:

  • Administrative and organizational skills
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Time and project management
  • Software and computer skills
  • Accounting programs
  • Word processors

A degree in HR pushes candidates to learn more and dive deeper. However, while a degree might teach you the basics, the actual learning depends on you. So comprehensive research with better studying habits will increase your chances of mastering the skills required for an hr administrator role. 

Furthermore, in the case of not having a degree or not feeling that your degree can help a lot, you can brush up your skills even further with a specialization or certificate in HR analytics or HR administration.

Certification in the relevant field not only increases your job application and enhances your chances of getting selected but also allows you to hone your skills from a professional standpoint.

With a certification in HR, you can master analyzing the employee performance evaluation sheets, maintaining employee records and extracting trends from the records, providing valuable insights for better business growth, strategizing to target short and long-term HR goals with better productivity, and a quicker turnout.

However, the learning outcomes are much broader, so if you’re willing to learn and enroll in a program, then take a look at the curriculum and learning outcomes for this HR Certification at HR University:

Human Resources Certifications

Step 2: Cultivate a Comprehensive Skillset

Aside from a degree in human resources, hr professionals often look at the past experience of potential candidates.

After the primary assessment, human resources managers categorize employees’ soft and hard skills. This includes previous work experience as an HR administrator, interpersonal and communication skills, documentation skills, computer literacy, understanding of HR software, and knowledge of labor relations. 

A comprehensive skill set is rewarding as employers can gauge your work portfolio, experience, and skills through your history. Employers know that you are aware of what you need to do to succeed and what talent you need to bring to the table, and that will be less teaching from their side. In addition, having a work portfolio can relieve employers, and they can delegate work to you immediately.

Step 3: Internship or Work Experience

Career advancement for HR administrators is directly tied to their work experience. 

Work experience as a Human Resources assistant counts toward the necessary HR experience needed to advance to higher positions. Although the amount of knowledge required to go to a higher place varies, individuals need as many as five years to qualify for some human resource management positions.

Individuals interested in this career should also join an organization that offers training opportunities and workshop events. Human resources professionals in some sectors wish to seek voluntary professional certification from the HR Certification Institute. Professional certification demonstrates to employers that the holder has a specific set of skills in HR management.

Certification also works as a resume booster for those wishing to seek employment elsewhere. Additionally, by enrolling in continuing education courses, those working within the field of human resource management can stay up-to-date with the changes affecting industry standards and practices. 

Candidates should consider registering for courses providing the opportunity to acquire additional knowledge and sharpen skills essential to continued success.

Step 4: Analysis and Presentation

Data research and analysis are two of the most critical skills needed for the human resources department. An HR administrator must know how to conduct data analysis, as they are responsible for employee data and extracting valuable results and metrics from it. 

Thus, it would help if you are fluent in analyzing data from reports, such as evaluation sheets, employee feedback reports, and departmental progress reports to extract meaningful results. Then, you can further research and suggest valuable strategies and recommendations for better employee productivity and business growth. 

After mastering the analysis, you can rehearse the tactics to analyze the data and extract meaningful results, and it is then your responsibility to explain such metrics to the HR professionals and seniors to make them aware of how well the business, departments, and employees are individually performing. 

Thus, it would help if you had a good grip on preparing presentations as your audience will be able to extract the results you want to convey from your work. In addition, it would help if you learned how to break down the technical statistics into more accessible reports so in the case of a non-technical investor or individual can easily understand the meaning of the work. 

So, you must have the skills to present the metrics and statistics in a way that is clear and understandable to everyone. This skill is one of the essential skills required for an hr administrator. 

Step 5: Technical Skills

Without experience in HR programs, you cannot help out HR as you will not be able to develop the appropriate analytical thinking, which is why you must understand how an HR department works. 

Generally, the HR administrator needs to know about:

  • Talent acquisition
  • Recruitment
  • Onboarding
  • Payrolling
  • Employee rewards and retention
  • Labor relations
  • Conflict management
  • You must understand these processes in detail to master HR skills. Only then can you contribute effectively to human resource managers by providing insights for changes in the departmental policies for better employee relations and business development.

In addition, once you have complete knowledge of how human resources managers work and about HR software, your mindset and methodology will ultimately start to adapt to the goals, and your contribution will become even more grounded.

Step 6: Apply for an HR Administrator’s Role

Once you fulfill the general criteria such as the qualifications, skillset, specializations, and certifications, then it’s time to start searching for the perfect role. 

Read the complete HR administrator job description for any position you apply for, and then tweak your resume and job application according to the organization’s demands.

Also, try to research the organization’s goals, aspirations, culture, and preferences on its website and social media platforms. This will expose you to a broader idea of the organization and what kind of talent they are working towards.

Ensure to refresh your skills with the most recent market trends and demands to increase your chances of winning the human resources administrator position.


Can you have a different degree and still transition to an HR administrator role?

While it is essential to have a bachelor’s degree, it is not mandatory to get one in human resources. Anyone can become a part of the human resources department, and the only requirement is to have the right skills.

Your one goal should be to develop the needed skills no matter what educational background you have.

Is it necessary to be good in Excel to become an hr administrator?

Even if you don’t have the best skills in utilizing Excel, it doesn’t mean that you cannot work in HR administration.

There is always room for further improvement, thanks to countless youtube videos, tutorials, and the Internet, where you can find plenty of information and explanations.

What is the career path for a human resources administrator?

The human resources administrator position is an initial starting role, which assists the recruiting team in different activities such as scheduling interviews, participation in candidate selection, reference checking, and preparation of contracts and data entry.

The upgrade to a better position would be becoming human resources professional such as an HR specialist, consultant, or advisor. Then comes the role of a Human Resources manager and HR director.

An HR manager works on all the tasks mentioned above and ensures coordination with the rest of the hr professionals.

What Makes a Good HR Administrator?

Skills are a crucial factor if you want to become an HR administrator.

If you are already working in the HR department but want to climb further on your career path, we recommend you elevate your skillset.

You must know about software development, computer systems, and hardware or software issues. Such skills ensure that you become a well-rounded human resources management fit.

Delve into market research to know what’s in demand and the recent trends. Then, mold your skills and knowledge based on your research, and work on projects to practice your skills. Good skills with time will ultimately make you a better HR administrator and a professional HR worker.

Conclusively, HR administrators are expected to understand various HR software systems, like HRMS, and be computer literate with programs such as PowerPoint, word, excel, etc.

Have a good understanding of labor relations and employment laws, have excellent organizational skills, the ability to prioritize well, have good communication skills, and a bachelor’s degree in human resources or any relevant field.

If you are new to Human Resources and are looking to break into an HR Administrator position, we recommend taking our HR Certification Courses, where you will learn how to build your skillset in human resources, build your human resources network, craft an excellent HR resume, and create a successful job search strategy that lands you a sought-after HR Administrator job.


Josh Fechter
Josh Fechter is the founder of HR.University. He's a certified HR professional and has managed global teams across 5 different continents including their benefits and payroll. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.