How Much Money Does an HR Manager Make?

Factors That Affect the Overall Compensation of an HR Manager

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Would you like to know how much money a human resources manager earns? It's an important and significant question if you're considering a career in the field of HR. The question is also important if you want to compare what you are currently making as an HR manager with the salaries of others in your field. You can use this information as a benchmark when you negotiate salary and other compensation with your employer.

According to the Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH), the median annual wage for human resources managers was $110,120 in May 2017. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $65,040, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $197,720. In May 2017, the median annual wages for HR managers in the top industries in which they worked were:

  • Management of companies and enterprises: $124,540
  • Professional, scientific, and technical services: $124,350
  • Manufacturing: $106,170
  • Government: $98,270
  • Healthcare and social assistance: $94,620

(The median wage is the wage at which half the employees in an occupation earn more than that amount, and half earn less.) The range of salaries for a Human Resources manager, according to Payscale.com, starts at $41,467 and reaches approximately $114,074 per Salary.com for a regional Human Resources manager.

The salary range data has been supplied here from several organizations because each has a different methodology in how they collect and display data.

Overall, the salary range for an HR manager appears to be $40,000 to $198,000.

An HR VP or other senior manager or company officer can negotiate for an even higher salary. This is true especially when their responsibilities encompass the entire HR function plus other functions that may include administration, customer-facing teams, safety, and employee-related finances.

More About How Much Money an HR Manager Makes

The salary earned by an HR manager varies from person to person based on factors like:

  • Industry (see above specifics)
  • Region
  • Company Size
  • Private or public sector employment
  • The size of the city in which the job is located
  • Market pay ranges based on the number of available jobs
  • Market pay ranges based on supply and demand

Additionally, the salary earned by an HR manager varies by personal factors such as:

  • Degrees
  • Credentials
  • Years of experience
  • Longevity in the organization
  • Performance
  • Certifications
  • Responsibilities
  • Continuing education

The breadth of the HR manager's job responsibilities affects pay significantly. An HR manager who performs the job of managing the complete HR function for an organization will make more money than managers who are in charge of portions of the people-related programs.

When the HR manager is responsible for the complete HR department, he or she is responsible for all functions including payroll, benefits, training, employee relations, recruitment and hiring, management development, compensation, organization development, personnel management, and often, communication, administration, and safety. These jobs are found most frequently in small- and mid-sized companies.

When an HR manager is responsible for managing a function within the HR department, these individuals have job titles such as training manager, recruitment manager, compensation manager, and labor relations manager. These opportunities are found most frequently in mid- to large-sized organizations.

Other Factors Affecting an HR Manager's Pay

HR manager jobs in large cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City pay more than those in smaller locales. Generally, the larger the organization in which the HR manager works, the more the HR managers are paid. Regionally, HR managers make less money in the Midwest and the South and more money on the East and the West Coasts.

As with any salary data, the amount of money that an HR manager makes is dependent on all of these factors listed and discussed.

For accurate information about the city or area in which you want to work, your best direction is to hold informational interviews with people currently working in HR manager roles. 

You can also search job boards such as Indeed.com or SimplyHired.com with searches that are specific to your city, industry, and company size. You can also talk to local recruiters and members of your local Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) chapter.

The job of an HR manager is fulfilling and rewarding. Based on these salary figures, the job is also potentially well paid. Learn more about all aspects of becoming an HR manager.