Labor Relations Manager Job Description
In today’s challenging business and labor market, skilled professional labor relations managers are held in high esteem by organizations in every industry. Enormous opportunities exist in this human resources specialty for trained, business-savvy individuals.
Nature of the Work
Labor relations managers use skills in data collection and analysis, negotiation and policy-making, along with knowledge of labor law and collective bargaining procedures to maintain an organization’s positive relationship with its employees.
During collective bargaining procedures, labor relations managers provide management with the information needed to negotiate new contracts. To be successful, the labor relations manager must be familiar with economic and wage data, and have the ability to gather, analyze and interpret data. These human resource specialists are also well-versed in contracts, and are often required to interpret and administer contracts with respect to employee wages, salaries, pensions, grievances, healthcare, union and management practices and other areas of contract management.
Dispute resolution is another area where labor relations managers are gaining significance, as organizations work to reduce costs and improve efficiency. Labor relations managers with advanced HR training in dispute resolution are finding success helping companies avoid expensive litigation, strikes and other business disruptions.
Training and Qualifications For Labor Relations Manager Jobs
Training requirements for labor relations manager positions vary by employer, and there are several educational paths to this field. Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in human resources, HR administration, or industrial and labor relations is an established way to enter the HR field. Another is pursuing a well-rounded liberal arts education, along with specialized human resources training. Some employers may prefer candidates with business or finance degrees, along with HR training, while others require a master’s degree in HR for certain executive-level positions.
Specialized courses in labor law, collective bargaining, organizational culture and labor history provide a valuable background for professionals pursuing a career as a labor relations manager. This can be accomplished through obtaining a bachelor’s degree, followed by HR training through a respected executive education program.
Some companies consider years of HR experience to be an essential qualification for labor relations manager jobs; however, many employers view training and certification to be as important – or even more important – than experience. Why? Because up-to-date skills and knowledge that can be leveraged into real-world solutions are highly valuable to firms competing in a challenging global environment.
Besides a solid educational foundation and advanced HR training, employers seek labor relations managers with solid negotiation, technology, and written and verbal communication skills. They also value personal traits such as integrity, confidentiality, and the ability to work with diverse groups of people.
Professional training and certification can positively affect your HR career, boosting your responsibilities and advancement opportunities, while leading to potentially higher income levels. HR professionals who wish to obtain the many advantages of professional certification often prepare for the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) or Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) credential.
Employers often seek out candidates who are motivated to pursue training and certification on their own. A respected industry credential is a sure way to stand out from a crowded field when competing for a new position or promotion.
Labor Relations Manager Employment Outlook
Labor relations managers are employed in virtually every industry. Some are self-employed, working as consultants, while others work in professional, scientific, and technical services, healthcare, administrative and support services, and financial services.
The BLS reports that employment for labor relations managers is expected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations in the coming years. Job growth will occur as changes in legislation and revised employment standards drive demand for labor relations experts. Additional growth will stem from the increasing trend of companies seeking to settle labor-management disputes through mediation and resolution, rather than costly court battles. The best job opportunities should go to college graduates and those who have earned industry certifications.
Additional Training and Experience Can Improve a Labor Relations Manager’s Opportunities
Top employers seek the best talent possible. In a tight job market, professional credentials and advanced training can mean the difference between landing your dream job and missing out on a once-in-a-career opportunity.
Pursuing professional training and HR certification offers countless advantages, including:
- The confidence that comes with obtaining a respected industry credential
- Up-to-date knowledge that employers need – and your competition lacks
- Qualifying for a wider range of positions with top employers
- The ability to compete for the best labor relations manager jobs
Becoming a labor relations manager can be a challenging and satisfying career choice. Prepare yourself to compete for the top positions by checking out professional HR training and certification. With a strong educational foundation and the advanced knowledge and skills top employers want, you’ll be ready to take your professional HR career to new heights!