The best sectors for HR, as voted by HR professionals

by John Hilton14 May 2014
Consulting and professional services have topped a list of the most popular HR sectors, followed closely by information technology. collects anonymous employee reviews of employers and has compiled a list of the most popular industries for HR professionals.
However, much of what drives people towards different sectors depends on their personal values and what they want from their career.
“I would suggest early in a HR career it is good to work in industry or business that is highly structured, with strong people practices and systems,” Bree Mitchelson, director of The Strategist Group, told HC Online.
“This is often found in the large organisations across most industries including banking and finance, aviation, health, resources and government. This offers opportunity to learn how it 'should' look, where even those good systems have their downfalls, and a continuous improvement approach which is generally taken in these organisations.”
Once their career is established, it’s a matter of finding an industry or role that aligns with their personal interests, career path and values, said Mitchelson.
“I think it always helps to be an effective HR professional if you are passionate about the work an organisation does.”
David Owens, managing director of the HR recruitment company HR Partners, agrees.

“It's different for everybody – some people will want to work for a not-for-profit, some people will want to work for a healthcare or age-care organisation. Those people with a strong sense of social conscience obviously want to work in an environment where they can contribute to the greater good of the community.”

From a commercial point of view, the industries sought after by candidates include fast-moving consumer goods, pharmaceuticals and global businesses with a highly-recognised brand, he said.  

“I see a lot of HR people who want to work for a named business and are quite keen to develop a 'blue chip' resume, where all the organisations they've worked for are well-known, of scale, perhaps a successful business or maybe even a trendy business.”

The most popular sectors for HR
Industry                                                   Average Score (out of 5)
Consulting & Professional Services 4.8
Information Technology 4.7
Recruitment 4.3
Building & Construction 4.2
Digital Media 4.2
Energy, Mining & Resources 4.1
Engineering 4.1
Insurance 4.0
Media 4.0
Banking & Finance 3.8
Telecommunications 3.8
Government 3.5
Hospitality & Tourism 3.5
Medical & Healthcare 3.3
Education & Training 2.8
 What do you consider the best sectors for HR?


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