What Is the Role of HR in Finding a Job? (Plus FAQs)

Updated 21 July 2022

Human resources departments are an important link between an organisation's employees and management. This department can play a major role in finding, interviewing, hiring and training job candidates. If you're searching for a job, it's helpful to understand what an HR department does and how it can affect the hiring process. In this article, we explain the role of HR in finding a job and the responsibilities of this department, and we provide the answers to other frequently asked questions.

What is the role of HR in finding a job?

Human resources (HR) is a department found at most companies that connects employees and management. The HR department is often responsible for recruiting, hiring and training professionals to become members of an organisation's workforce.

These professionals create job postings, evaluate applications, schedule interviews and onboard new hires. As you begin your job search, it's helpful to familiarise yourself with these professionals and how they fit into the application and interview process. This can help you use this department to your advantage as you search for jobs.

Related: What Is Human Resources? Guide to Roles and Duties

What are the duties of the HR department?

A company's HR department can fulfil many duties related to finding, interviewing and hiring new employees. Some of these responsibilities include:

Identifying needs for employees

The HR department closely monitors the needs of their organisation to determine when they search for new employees. They track each position within a company, and whether an organisation is filling an existing position or creating a new role, they work to ensure the company attracts and hires the best candidate. To identify employee needs, HR professionals often complete tasks like:

  • tracking headcount

  • pinpointing the skills and experience required for each role

  • determining compensation for new employees

When an individual leaves a company, it's not always necessary to replace them with another professional who shares the same skills and experience. Instead of writing the new job posting with the previous employee in mind, HR professionals typically make sure the job posting reflects the organisation's current needs.

Creating job descriptions

Usually, the HR department takes responsibility for writing job descriptions for new job postings. They take the time to craft compelling and detailed job descriptions to attract top talent. They may meet with other departments to develop the scope and requirements of the position. Once they write job descriptions, they post them on websites and networking sites and begin searching for candidates that fit the requirements of the job.

Recruiting employees

The HR department often organises activities to recruit new employees. Events like job fairs can help businesses meet several candidates at once so they can quickly and efficiently fill multiple positions. As a job seeker, recruitment events can provide you with an opportunity to connect with representatives from multiple organisations including those essential to the hiring process, like HR professionals.

In most cases, job fairs provide you with the opportunity to approach employers to learn more about the company's objectives, workplace culture and potential job openings. HR teams work to ensure these events are positive and informative experiences to encourage qualified candidates to apply.

Related: What Does a Recruitment Consultant Do? (With Career Path)


After they recruit job candidates, members of the HR team typically conduct interviews with candidates. These interviews can be phone calls, video chats or in-person conversations. HR professionals are responsible for creating a list of questions to ask job candidates and evaluating each candidates' performance.


Along with interviews, HR professionals can use other methods to screen job candidates. Screening is a process of evaluating candidates to determine whether they meet an organisation's needs. Some screening methods include:

  • Skills tests: Skills tests evaluate whether a job candidate can apply their skills to the occupation.

  • Personality tests: Personality tests can help recruiters gauge how the candidate would contribute to the company culture.

  • Background checks: Employers often conduct background checks to learn more about details like criminal history and credit reports.

  • Social media checks: Sometimes, recruiters skim a candidate's social media accounts to understand more about their personality and public image.

  • Reference checks: Reference checks involve contacting professional references that candidates provide. This screening method can help recruiters learn more about a candidate from the perspective of other professionals.

Facilitating the hiring process

The HR department plays a major role in every step of the hiring process. After they publish job postings the HR department reviews each application to determine which applicants meet the basic qualifications.

In the next stage of the hiring process, after evaluating all applications, they pass a list of top candidates to the hiring manager to review further. Often, the HR department is the first to review your cover letter and resume and determine whether you have the necessary qualifications to move on to the next step. After additional steps like screening and interviewing, further along in the hiring process, an HR representative creates a formal job offer and sends it to the candidate.

Related: Job Hunting Tips To Secure the Job You Want

Negotiating compensation

After sending a job offer, HR professionals typically negotiate compensation with candidates. This is an important part of the hiring process, as it can affect whether a candidate chooses to accept a job. HR representatives might research pay rates for comparable positions or use a standard rate set by the company. You can negotiate your compensation for a new position by scheduling a time to meet with an HR representative from your new company.

Training new employees

Usually, the HR department also develops onboarding and training programs for new employees. They create plans for on-the-job training and connect new employees with experienced employees that can teach them how to perform their new role. In some cases, an onboarding program can last several months, but the amount of knowledge-sharing and training you receive varies between employers.

They also complete duties like:

  • preparing a clear written statement of an employee's objectives and responsibilities

  • guiding employees through new hire paperwork

  • developing new hire orientation

  • providing a thorough tour of the facilities

  • scheduling regular meetings to check in with a new hire's level of comfort and engagement

  • offering guidance, advice and resources

  • developing additional educational and training opportunities

  • planning group events, such as team lunches to welcome new hires

  • setting up new hires' workstations

Related: Training Program Examples (With Step-by-Step Guide)

Setting up benefits programs

HR is also responsible for facilitating employee benefits. Often, a company's benefits package is one of the factors that may attract new employees. Employee benefits can include health insurance, paid time off, sick days, volunteer days and even continuing education. Some employers also offer unique perks like gym memberships, fitness programs, onsite haircuts, spa services and car washes.

If you're interested in learning more about the benefits an employer offers, an HR professional can provide you with the information you need. HR professionals can work with job candidates and new hires to help them understand the company's benefits and how to receive them.

Related: Your Guide to the Types of Employee Benefits

How can you work with HR to find a job?

Often, the HR department is a job candidate's direct contact with the company. HR professionals can help you understand the details of a position, the company culture and other information about the job. They can give you in-depth information that can help you determine whether a company is the right fit for you.

Once you get hired with a company, you can also work with the HR department to create a plan for advancement. HR professionals can guide you through your career at the company. They can recommend positions and new responsibilities, helping you move into higher roles.

Related: Your Online Career Coach: Advanced Job Search Tips To Get the Job

Can you network with HR professionals?

Networking with recruiters is a popular job-hunting technique. You can use professional networking websites or attend events like job fairs to make connections with HR representatives from different companies. With these individuals in your network, you can gain an internal point of contact at organisations that interest you and learn about new job opportunities early in the recruitment process. This can increase your chances of getting hired for a position.

You can also use your professional connections throughout your career. After forming relationships with these individuals, you can ask them for advice and recommendations, and they may be able to guide you into new roles.

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